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Duke University 

Rare Dooks 






IN 1832, 1833, AND 1834. 

VOL. I. 



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Departure from England — Storm during the VWge — 
A fine day on the Ocean — The 4th of July— Yankee Doodle-^ 
First sight of Land— Dressing for Landing— A News-boat— 
Unexpected News — The Pilot — Entrance to New York — 
Manhatta — New Amsterdam, or New York — Indians . 1 


The Battery— Negroes — Broadway — City Hall — Private 
Houses— Hotels— Boarding Houses — Manners and Customs 
—Population — The Hudson — Hoboken — Cholera in New 
York— Neglect of Cleanliness— Pigs in the Streets . 26 


Steamboats — The North American Steamer — Voyaire on 
the Hudson River — Passengers — Attention to Females — 



Banks of the Hudson — The Palisades — Sleepy Hollow — Tl.e 
Highlands — A Thunder Storm .... 46 


Westpoint— Military School— Journey to Catskill — Stage 
Coaches— Pine Orchard — The Cascades — Remarkable Tree- 
Rattlesnakes — The Rattlesnake Hunter— Athens . . 60 


New Lebanon Springs — Shakers — Ann Lee — Ceremonies 
of the Shakers — A Modern Miracle— Creed, Rules, and Regu- 
lations, of the Shakers — Their Occupations — Schools — Costume 

— Tlie Shakers' Meeting — Tobacco Smoking Festival— A 
New Messiah 83 


Journey to Northampton — Soil and Agriculture — Character 
of the Country — General Appearance of Comfort — Anecdote 

— Northampton — Villages and Towns in America — Mount 
Holyoke — Hadley — The Regicides — Springfield — Manufactory 
of Arms — Comfortable Situation of the Workmen — The Lock- 
smith of Springfield — Journey to Boston— Ware — Wor- 
cester ........ lu8 


Boston — The Harbour — Public and Private Buildings — The 
Streets — The Statehouse — Statue of Washington — Neglected 
Public Walk — Music in the Evening — Faneuil Hall — The 
Market — Post Office — Banks — Athenaeum — The Freemasons' 
Lodge — American Architecture — Temperance Societies — 


Strong Liquors — Crimes from Intemperance — Anecdote — 
Serenades — Cholera — Panic — Cholera Hospital — Relief 
Association . . . . . . . 129 


Public Institutions in Boston — The Peace Society — State of 
Education — Religion — Different Religious Sects — Baptists — 
Missionaries — Unitarians . . . . . 157 


Charlestown — Navy Yard — The Constitution Frigate — 
Breed's Hill and Bunker's Hill — Monument on Bunker's Hill 
— Lynn — Salem — Beverley — Newbury Port — New Hamp- 
shire — Portsmouth — Maine — Breakneck Hill — Curiosity — 
Female Heroism — Portland — Soil in Maine — Emigrants — 
Agriculture — Produce — Wages — A Husking Feast . 180 


Return to Boston — Environs — Jamaica Pond — Mount 
Auburn — Cambridge College — John Quincy Adams — Nahant 
— Balls — Sea Serpent — Cattle Fair at Brighton — A Storm in 
Boston — Various Uses of Hats — Pawtucket — Providence — 
Mount Hope — King Philip — Journey to New York — Hell 
Gate 209 


New York after the Cholera — Brooklyn — Navy Yard — 
American Navy — Naval Officers — Patterson — Passaic Falls — 
American Institute and Annual Exhibition of Manufactures — 
Negro School — The American System of Education — School 
Agents' Society — American Bible Society . . 230 

r' r^ r^ f-^ ^-f) ri 



Journev to Philadelphia — Philadelphia — Schuylkill Coal — 
Literarv Societies — Benevolent Institutions — Sunday Schools 
Association — Pennsylvania Hospital — House of Refuge — 
Banks — The Mint — Museum — ]\Iammoth — State House 251 


Environs of Philadelphia — Waterworks — Franklin's Tomb 

— Navy Yard — Election of President — Ancient Swedish 
Colony — Swedish Church ..... 275 


Baltimore — The Cathedral — Monuments — Charles Carroll 

— His Death and Funeral — Population of the City — Religion 
— Slaves and free Servants — Articles of Exportation — Journey 
to Washington — Washington — Departure for Virginia — 
District of Columbia — Potomac River — Fort Washington — 
Fredericksburgh — Roads in the Southern States — Journey to 
Richmond 295 


Richmond — Public Buildings — Monument for the Persons 
who perished in the Theatre — Slave Auction — Condition of 
Slaves in the United States — Dangers attached to an im- 
mediate Emancipation — Advantages of the Colonization 
System . . . • . • • • 318 

Tobacco Manufactory at Richmond — Departure for Norfolk 
— Norfolk — The Dismal Swamp — Journey to Fayette ville — 


The Cotton Plant — Fayetteville — Journey to Charleston — 
Rattlesnakes 353 


Charleston — Monument to the Memory of Walter Scott — 
General Hayne — Nullification, its object, progress, and termi- 
nation ........ 379 


Departure for Savannah — Beaufort — Female Slave — 
Palmetto — Fort constructed of Oyster Shells — Savannah — 
Journey to Augusta — Augusta — Hamburgh — Casualties at- 
tendant on Travelling in the South — Journey to Macon — Land 
Lottery — Macon — A Negro Shopkeeper — Journey to Columbus 
— A Gans: of Slaves— A Creek Indian . . . 402 




IN 1832, 1833, AND 1834. 


The temporary absence of worldly scenes and employments 
produces a state of mind peculiarly fitted to receive new and vivid 
impressions. The vast space of water that separates the hemi- 
spheres is like a blank pa^e in existence. There is no gradual tran- 
sition by which, as in Europe, the features and population of one 
coiintr} " blend almost imperceptibly with those of another. From 
the moment you lose sight of the land you have left, all is vacancy, 
until you step on the opi)osite shore, and are launched at once into 
the bustle and novelties of another world. 

Washington Irving. 

The southern coast of beautiful England 
insensibly disappeared before my eyes : from 
the deck of the American packet, I tried in 
vain to get a last glimpse of the British Isles. 
The mantle of night enveloped in obscurity 
the verdant hills of Cornwall. Adieu to 

VOL. I. B 


Our complement on board consisted of two 
hundred individuals from almost every coun- 
try in Europe, besides Americans. Among* 
the English and Irish, there was a large pro- 
portion of emigrants, who with wives, children, 
and servants, quitted their native soil, to seek 
in distant climes a spot, where taxes of a 
thousand different kinds and denominations 
might not absorb their little all. When the 
whole group assembled on deck, it was a 
truly interesting scene : the bustle of some, 
who constantly moved about, instilled spirit 
in others, apparently inclined to despondency. 
Yes, many were certainly dejected. They 
left behind, country, friends, relatives ; and 
who could venture to predict whether they 
would ever see either again, or tread the 
shore which contained the ashes of their fore- 
fathers, and recalled to their minds so many 
endearing recollections ? 

The uniformity of a sea-life generally en- 
genders melancholy ; the monotony is insup- 
portable : there is no diversity, except in 
the state of the atmosphere. Whichever 
way the eye turns, and surveys the circled 
horizon, no other object is visible but frothing 
waves, apparently rolling from one side of 
the blue sky to the other. If a sail heaves 


in sight at a distance, the event may be 
compared to a messenger sent from another 
world. In an instant, the whole deck is 
covered with people, anxious to behold 
the strange ship : every spy-glass is put 
in requisition. But, in our case, curiosity 
was not satisfied with a bare view of her 
filled canvass ; speculation followed as to the 
identity of her flag, whence she came, and 
whither bound. Similar rencontres too often 
produced violent altercations among- indivi- 
duals of so many different nations, some of 
whom pretended to be wiser than their neigh- 
bours ; but they were soon quelled, every one 
returning to his uniform occupation of con- 
templating the agitated sea — alternately 
raising or lowering our little republic — of 
counting the large shoals of porpoises which 
faithfully accompanied the ship the whole 
voyage, or surveying the unchangeable hori- 
zon and the swift passing clouds. How^ often, 
whilst meditating on the beauty of the immea- 
surable heavenly arch, have I not fancied I saw 
a distant shore rising from the deep : the joy, 
alas ! was short-lived : 'twas but a cloud. 

One evening, when the moon shone forth in 
all her splendour, the whole company assem- 
bled on deck. Glees and songs, variously 

B 2 


executed, formed the amusement : every one 
appeared happy and contented. It was late 
before retreat to rest was thought of; melo- 
dious sounds, but recently heard above, were 
now re-echoed from the births below. Before 
daylight, however, these charming dreams 
were suddenly converted into gloom. A 
dreadful storm greeted the convivial com- 
panions at break of day. The first glimpse 
at an enraged element is truly terrific. 
From a smooth surface — as it had been 
the preceding night — the sea had risen 
mountain high ; the tops of the waves were 
as cream-white as the snow-covered Mont 
Blanc. In the midst of them, our ship was 
seen dancing, sometimes defying their power, 
in turn vigorously repulsed by offended 
masses of water — then hidden between two 
sea-walls, nearly as elevated as the main- 
mast — and again almost immersed in the 
immense deep. The winds — those proud 
aristocrats of the ocean — whistled in the air, 
and, with the aid of the rigging, performed a 
most discordant concert. All the passengers 
were dejected : paleness overspread the fea- 
tures of the women : silent in a corner, with 
palpitating hearts, they listened to the roar of 
the tempest and the waves. Children, seized 


with fear, clung to their parents, and screamed 
piteously. Probably, there was no real dan- 
ger ; but a gale in the midst of the ocean is, 
after all, no joking matter. None, except a 
person who has actually witnessed a similar 
scene, can form an idea of the creaking, roar- 
ing, and rolling, which incessantly tormented 
us during four-and-twenty endless hours. The 
ship rolled the whole time from side to side ; 
and, whenever she changed position, her 
timbers creaked as when Enceladus turns 
himself under the weight of Mount Etna. 
Trunks, carpet-bags, dressing-cases, and 
desks, were displaced and knocked against 
each other each time she hove about. Woe 
to him who happened to be in their way ! 

Another inconvenience occurred when din- 
ner was announced, which, however, partook 
a good deal of the ludicrous : the guests 
were every moment exposed to the danger 
of receiving in their laps joints of beef and 
mutton, ducks, hams, potatoes, &c. It was 
not easy to refrain from laughing on seeing 
the restless dishes changing situation every 
instant, sometimes at the top, then at the 
bottom of the table, and again disappearing 
altogether under it. But, dinner concluded, 
mirth also took leave of the company : the 


Storm continued with unabated violence, and 
gloom once more took possession of all of us. 
Night came on. None would retire to rest. 
Around a dismal lamp — sole luminary in the 
lonely cabin — assembled a group of passen- 
gers ; who, by way of pastime, related a vari- 
ety of anecdotes, clearly showing what sub- 
ject was uppermost in their minds : they all 
had reference to shipwrecks. At sea, tales 
of this description may be compared to ghost- 
stories on shore, for no one ever heard of 
ghosts on board a ship — probably from an- 
tipathy to the watery element. 

Morning soon broke in upon our company 
— still excited by the recitals of the preceding- 
night. The sunbeams, spread over the sur- 
face of the sea, gradually dispersed the 
clouds, and seemed to insinuate to the winds 
their wrath at the continuance of the storm. 

Prostrate lay the towering waves — on the 
smooth surface played the sun — the ship was 
stationary — her canvass, drooping and heavy, 
clung to the masts ; the exhausted tars betook 
themselves to rest : in dancing groups ap- 
peared multitudes of fish, and in their centre 
stretched forth a monstrous whale, desirous 
to behold the majesty of light. Aloft, in cir- 
cles round the masts, harmonious concerts 


were performed by aquatic birds. The day 
was fine : every thing' appeared to have ac- 
quired new life. No comparison can be drawn 
between a beautiful day at sea and one on 
shore : there is something* so delightful and 
reviving in the former, that its influence is 
irresistible. The 4th of July was just one 
of this description. Who is the American 
that does not rejoice at the recollection of 
what occurred on that day, 1776 ? Who is 
ignorant of the memorable act then signed by 
the boldest men in the colonies ? Who has 
forgotten the determined step adopted by 
these patriots to declare themselves free and 
independent, in defiance of the power and 
fleets of the Mother Country. An American 
is justly proud of the result of this revolution, 
when comparing the past with the present. 

The anniversary, however, is associated 
with so many interesting events, that it is 
invariably celebrated with great solemnity. 
Wherever an American happens to be on that 
day, whether in the midst of the ocean, or 
in the forests of the Western Country, the 4th 
of July must be observed. Our packet, as 
I have before observed, was American : the 
captain therefore made the necessary arrange- 
ments for its celebration. At sun-rise the 


passengers were awoke by the firing of twenty- 
four guns — being one for every State in the 
Republic. The handsome American flag, now 
waving in every sea, and admired in all parts 
of the globe, was hoisted with demonstra- 
tions of joy. The numerous stars seemed 
delighted at the roar of the cannon, while the 
sunbeams gave them a light red die, ap- 
proaching to nature. All the Americans on 
board hastened on deck as soon as the first 
gun had been fired : the fineness of the morn- 
ing, added to the remembrance of former 
times, made them feel a degree of ecstasy, 
which soon communicated itself to the stran- 
gers on board. Every one recollected some 
noble deed, some heroic action, performed 
during the national contest for liberty ; and 
all emulated to raise to the skies America's 
beau-ideal — Washington. 

By this time, the whole company had as- 
sembled on deck, listening to the Speakers. 
Among the steerage passengers, there was a 
short, thick-set man, almost seized with deli- 
rium on hearing recorded many acts of valour 
and intrepidity attached to the names of a 
number of revolutionary men. Long did he 
try to suppress his feelings : he touched his 
hat, or turned upon his heel, with a view to 


check his emotions ; but, when one of the ora- 
tors happened to mention the words — Inde- 
pendence, Equality, and Liberty, he had no 
more command over himself: he vociferated 
'' Yankee Doodle.'' This national song is, 
properly speaking, an old Italian melody : 
obsolete or forgotten in the Old World, it all 
at once got in vogue in the New, and has in 
later times become so popular that there is 
hardly a child who cannot hum it. When 
sung by several persons, any one may put 
whatever words he pleases to the music ; by 
this means, many ludicrous and appropriate, 
and some very indifferent and vulgar, verses 
are introduced ; but, either way, they are 
always approved by the company, which, to 
signify its acquiescence, repeats the two last 
verses. Upon the present occasion, no indi- 
vidual ventured to give an impromptu : the 
old words, in praise of Washington, Franklin, 
Liberty, Equality, &c. were preserved. 

Hilarity presided at dinner. Of toasts and 
speeches there w as an ample supply. One of 
the latter, in particular, was an eulogium on 
the President of the United States. Toasts 
were also given in honour of the respective 
sovereigns of Sweden, France, and England. 
The entertainment concluded with a general 


dance on deck, composed of old and young*, 
poor and rich, love-sick and sea-sick, sober 
and drunk ; in short, of nearly two hundred 
persons. The band consisted of four inebri- 
ated individuals, with their hats cocked up on 
one side. The violins were certainly not of 
the Cremonese fabric ; they appeared to have 
weathered many a gale, and would unques- 
tionably have baffled even Paganini's skill. 
Their inefficiency, however, did not interrupt 
the conviviality for a moment, the performers 
beating time so loud as nearly to drown the 
music. The dancers, too, w ere so animated, 
that harmony was almost unnecessary. A cou- 
ple of corpulent Irishmen, especially, continued 
dancing long after the music had ceased, as 
if it required a certain time to stop their evo- 
lutions when once put in motion. One of 
them, whose capers were truly dangerous to 
the bystanders, on being informed that the 
music had ceased, and that dancing was con- 
sequently over, answered very laconically, 
*' What about music ?" and proceeded to twist 
about his fair damsel for at least ten minutes, 
to the great hazard and danger of the sur- 
rounding party, every moment exposed to a 
summerset into the sea. No accident, how- 
ever, happened ; and, when dancing had been 


kept up CO a late hour, in the midst of the finest 
moonlight the company retired, apparently 
delighted with the amusements of the day. 

At length, on the 9th of July, in the fore- 
noon, I heard the magic sound, ''Land!" 
pronounced from the top of the mast-head by 
a sailor, sent on the look-out by the captain, 
who was as anxious as any passenger to set 
foot on terra firma, after a voyage of thirty- 
nine days. The joyful intelligence passed 
from mouth to mouth, with the rapidity of 
lightning, until every one on board had re- 
peated — *' Land !" Every eye sparkled with 
joy. Fancy already landed the whole company 
on the American shore; they thought they saw 
trees, houses, fields, and cities. The men 
began to talk about good hits and specula- 
tions ; the elderly women about housekeeping* ; 
the girls blushed at the idea of being so near 
their lovers ! The young men formed a thou- 
sand projects of amusement by way of indem- 
nity for privations endured during a long and 
tedious voyage. All were in a most happy 
state of mind ; even those who had expe- 
rienced the effects of sea-sickness, and had 
been quite indifferent as to the future, now 
raised their heads, and hurried, like the rest, 
to put their things in order, adjust their toi- 



lette, and indulge in a promenade on deck, 
for the benefit of fresh air. Bustle and con- 
fusion were every where visible. None would 
be behind-hand in dress ; costumes, which, 
for more than a month past, had enjoyed 
uninterrupted tranquillity in carefully packed 
trunks, were now sported. Bond Street 
hats saw light again, and were substituted 
for the few remaining caps, many of these 
having deserted their owners during the 
late gale, to take a view of the coast of 
Labrador or Nova Scotia. One of the pas- 
sengers, and his family in particular, had, in 
the course of ten minutes, undergone so per- 
fect a metamorphosis, that it was next to im- 
possible to recognize either him, his wife, qr 
two little children, to whom we were greatly 
indebted for infantine concerts all the time 
we were at sea. The husband appeared in a 
new snuff-coloured frock-coat, a sugar-loaf 
hat, and a neatly-plaited frill, which, how- 
ever, upon closer examination, turned out to 
form a mere exterior appendix to a very 
dirty shirt ; laced wristbands covered his 
fingers, in part adorned with rings, and a 
fashionable cane in the right hand completed 
the tout ensemble. The attire of the lady was 
proportionably elegant : she eclipsed all that 


approached her. Her costly Parisian bonnet 
had nevertheless met with a sad accident, 
which not only damped her spirits most sen- 
sibly, but called forth a shower of abuse, and 
a succession of oaths on the part of the dis- 
appointed husband. A clumsy sailor had 
unfortunately thrust his foot through the 
bandbox which contained the treasure, and, 
by the pressure, so completely discomfited 
shape and plumary ornaments that no traces 
of its original beauty could be distinguished. 
Recourse was had to repairs ; or, to use a 
sea phrase, to jury-masts ; but, such was the 
demolition produced, that the impression of 
the sailor's foot could never be effectually 
removed; the bonnet, after all, preserved the 
appearance of an old ruin, to the great morti- 
fication of the fair ow^ner. Straw-coloured 
kid gloves covered a pair of blood-red hands, 
and transparent silk stockings decorated a 
couple of feet of uncommon size. Thus 
attired, the handsome couple took shelter 
under a large umbrella — for the rain fell in 
torrents — consulting how they were to spend 
the evening. The husband proposed a walk 
in Broadway, as the most fashionable place 
of resort ; but this w as overruled by the lady, 
who insisted on going to the play. 


Whilst the party were thus discussing the 
point, the other passengers had ah'eady made 
up their minds as to the mode of celebrating 
their landing on the American soil. Some 
flattered their palates with the prospect of 
fresh vegetables, particularly new green peas ; 
others were exclusively bent on strawberries 
and pineapples. Two young Americans 
made a long harangue on the superior fla- 
vour of American apples. In the midst of 
these important deliberations, our packet 
was hailed by one of those fine fast-sailing 
boats belonging to the newspaper establish- 
ments in New York, which, in spite of the 
worst possible weather, invariably put to 
sea to meet the European packets, for the 
purpose of getting the earliest intelligence. 
We were all anxious to get a sight of the first 
American ; and, although much occupied with 
plans for the evening, could not refrain from 
gathering round the messenger the moment he 
put his foot on deck. The captain shook him 
heartily by the hand, gave him the London jour- 
nals, and asked, with a kind of nonchalance, 
** ICvery thing is well in this part of the world, 
I suppose ?" 

" No, quite the contrary," answered the 
boatman, casting a look which paralysed us all. 


" What is then the matter ?" exclaimed the 
captain, struck with amazement, and impa- 
tient. " Is New York in flames — or is the 
President dead ?" 

" The cholera is among us, and causes the 
most dreadful havock," was the answer. 

" What ! cholera in America !" uttered 
every one, and the paleness of death spread 
over countenances but lately tinged with the 
colour of the rose. Looks were exchanged, 
as if to derive consolation from one another ; 
half sentences were muttered by some on the 
nature of the disease ; others expressed sur- 
prise how it could possibly have crossed the 
Atlantic, and cursed their unlucky star for 
having deceived their expectations. Adieu 
theatre, pleasures, promenade in Broadway, 
vegetables, green peas, and high-flavoured 
apples ! 

The packet, however, neared the shore, 
until every object was perfectly discernible ; 
a little country church and Sandy Hook Light- 
house were clearly visible to the naked eye. 
We now took the pilot on board. An original 
like him I had seen in no country in Europe. 
Once on board, he moved fore and aft with the 
rapidity of lightning, from larboard to star- 
board ; then, climbing up the rigging and the 


gangways, commanded aloud, and in a tone of 
voice indicating his own self-importance. It 
appeared impossible for him to be quiet a 
single moment. " Quiet to quick bosoms is a 
hell," says Lord Byron very justly. He might 
be compared to a perpetunm mohile : every 
thing that stood in his way was kicked about. 
Respect for the fair sex was entirely out of 
the question : Duty above all was his motto ; 
and to this he strictly adhered. His exterior 
was a true personification of his character. 
His brown summer trowsers, by being too 
often ingulphed in the washing-tub, had 
shrunk to such a size that the knees filled 
the space allotted to the calves ; these 
were, in turn, covered by a pair of white 
and blue stockings. Many were the button 
vacancies in his sky-blue coat; and the knot 
of a coloured neckhandkerchief had fixed 
its abode on one of his ears. His brown hat 
also had received so many knocks, that its 
appearance resembled that of agitated waves. 
The whole personage presented a singular 
coyp d'ceil. But, if the exterior denoted his 
character, so did also his countenance. None 
was ever more striking. It has been con- 
tended that the soul of man is pictured on his 
forehead — that the eyes are spectacles for 


him who chooses to read the heart. In him 
this proved correct. The first aspect con- 
vinced us what a little d — 1 we had got on 
board (this was the title given him by the 
sailors) ; and his figure, 1 am well satisfied, is 
still fresh in the memory of many of the pas- 

We were now close in shore, passing a 
sound called '' The Narrows," a mile in 
breadth. Inside this, a most beautiful bay 
opened to our view, intersected by several 
islands, amongst which was Governor's Is- 
land, with a kind of Martello tower on it, built 
of brick. This bay, formed on one side by the 
New Jersey shore, and on the other by Long 
Island, is about twenty miles in circumference, 
and every where so deep that the largest ship 
can ride at anchor. At a distance appeared 
a point with a small castle on it, surrounded 
by trees planted with great regularity and 
taste ; and, behind, steeples rose in infinite 
number. This was the city of New York. 
On the left of Castle Garden, the beautiful 
Hudson showed itself; and on the right 
flowed the East River, properly speaking an 
arm of the sea, dividing the city from Long 
Island. Thousands of ships, steamers, and 
boats, passed each other in various directions ; 

VOL. I. c 


and flags of Europe and America waved 
peaceably together. Country seats and trees 
covered the opposite shores ; the verdant 
foliage charmed our eyes, not yet accustomed 
to this novel sight. The scene was truly 
magnificent, and can only be justly appre- 
ciated by those who, having been long at sea, 
suddenly enter a beautiful port. 

*' The temporary absence of worldly scenes 
and employments," says Washington Irving, 
*' produces a state of mind peculiarly fitted to 
receive new and vivid impressions."* 

It is probable, had we landed at another 
place at first, and only gradually been pre- 
pared for the beauties of the port of New 
York, we should not have enjoyed it so much. 
Certain it is, however, that the entrance to it, 
the extensive bay that opens to the view, 
and the two magnificent rivers that present 
themselves to the right and left, form a coup 
d'ceil which can barely be matched in the 
whole world. When I surveyed this fine 
scene, and the city surrounded by water, I 
could easily conceive the admiration with 
which honest Hudson must have been struck 
when he beheld these natural beauties for the 
first time. Juet, his travelling companion, 

• The Sketch Book. 


called the island on which New York is situ- 
ated Manna-hato, which means the island of 
manna — in other words, a country where 
milk and honey flow/* And an old Indian 
tradition furnishes another proof how, in the 
remotest times, these parts were admired. 
'* The name Manhattoes is said to be derived 
from the great Indian god Manet ho, who is 
stated to have made this island his favourite 
place of residence, on account of its peculiar 
attractions. Indian traditions say further, 
that the bay was formerly a large lake, filled 
with silver and gold fish, in the middle of 
which was this fine island, abounding in every 
species of fruit and flowers ; but that a sud- 
den inundation of the River Hudson destroyed 
every vestige of these beauties, and that Ma- 
netho fled in consequence behind the extensive 
waters of Ontario."! To me it appears, there- 
fore, not unlikely that the first Europeans — 
a handful of Dutchmen — who, a few years 
after Hudson's return to Holland, set sail in 
the celebrated bark, Goede Vrouw, under the 
particular protection of St. Nicholas, should 
settle in this neighbourhood, and found a 
city, where, for a period of fifty years, they 
enjoyed all the advantages of a real old- 

♦ Knickerbocker's New York, v. i. f Ibid. 

C 2 


fashioned Dutch life. The immortal Knicker- 
bocker gives an account of the situation of 
New Amsterdam, the name of the city at that 
time, in the following manner : — 

''It was fortunate for New Amsterdam 
that the words learning, education, taste, and 
talents, were perfectly unknown there : a 
genius was a strange animal, and a learned 
woman would have been as great a piece of 
curiosity as a frog with horns, or a burning 
dragon. None, in fact, knew more than his 
neighbour, nor did any body wish to know 
more than an honest man ought to know, 
who attends only to his own business : the 
clergyman and the notary were the only two 
who knew how to write, and the wise Governor 
Twiller always signed his name with a X- 
The houses were of wood, and the large gate 
only opened upon the occasion of some mar- 
riages, funerals, new-year's days, St. Nicholas' 
day, or other great festivities. The families 
lived in the kitchen. The fireplace was of 
real aristocratic size, where all the members 
of the household, old and young, master and 
servant, black and white, even cat and dog, 
partook of the general privilege, and had a 
corner allotted to themselves. Here sat the 
old burgher, for hours together, in deep me- 


ditatioii, smoking' his pipe, and looking at the 
fire with half-closed eyes, without thinking- of 
any thing. The good wife opposite was bu- 
sily employed in spinning or knitting stock- 
ings. They had a great aversion to giving 
dinners, but kept up the spirit of society by 
occasional tea-parties. The company used 
to assemble about three o'clock, and returned 
home at six : in winter time, the fashionable 
hours were a little earlier, to enable the ladies 
to get home before dark. In the middle of 
the tea-table was placed a large earthenware 
dish, with fat pork cut in slices, and tea was 
served out of a very large coarse porcelain 
tea-pot, painted with figures, representing 
little, thick Dutch shepherds and shepherdes- 
ses, watching swine — boats sailing in the 
air, and houses built in the sky. To sweeten 
the beverage, a bit of sugar was placed by the 
side of each cup, and the company helped 
themselves with much decorum, sometimes to 
a bit of sugar, sometimes to a drink of tea — 
until an old, cunning, and economical mis- 
tress invented an improvement, which con- 
sisted in having a bit of sugar attached to a 
string suspended to the ceiling, and hanging 
perpendicularly over the table, so that it 
might pass from mouth to mouth. The young 


girls never opened their lips, except to say 
Yah Mynheer, or Yah, ya Vrouw, to every 
question put to them, and behaved in every 
respect as well educated housemaids. The 
passion of a lover was greater or less in pro- 
portion to the size or breadth of the object ; 
and a stout girl, with a dozen petticoats, w^as 
declared by a Dutch poet from the interiqr to 
be as brilliant as a primrose, and as voluptu- 
ous as a full grown cabbage-head. Certain 
it is, that, in those times, the heart of a lover 
could only be fixed upon one fair lady at a 
time ; our modern youths may, on the con- 
trary, have half a dozen. Attired in half a 
score of inexpressibles, and shoes with a pair 
of tremendous brass buckles, a low broad- 
brimmed hat, and the hair, hanging down his 
back, in the shape of a queue, enveloped in an 
eelskin, the lover, thus equipped, stepped 
manfully forward, with pipe in mouth, to court 
some helle. Seldom or ever did he miscarry 
in his attack, but generally, after having 
thoroughly smoked his fair damsel for some 
time, took the fortress by assault on honour- 
able terms." 

Whilst recalling to my memory the many 
remarkable circumstances, which, from former 
times up to the present, are associated with 


the parts that now appeared before me, and 
while comparing the manners of New Ams- 
terdam, when " the honest burghers were 
sitting for hours together smoking, and slum- 
bering over the affairs of the State, without 
once breaking the silence, so essential for deep 
meditation," with modern New York, where 
every one complains of the shortness of time, 
and none appears to have a moment to spare — 
under these various contemplations I landed, 
and trod for the first time the American soil 
— that soil whose early inhabitants and legi- 
timate masters were persuaded through the 
agency of money, words, the sword, and 
blood, to believe that white strangers had a 
greater claim to it than themselves, and that 
a Holy Father in another country, called the 
Pope, had distinctly declared, that the Red 
men were infidels, who ought to be thankful 
to the Whites for their religious zeal in cross- 
ing the Atlantic Ocean to improve the con- 
dition of these savages, preach a new and 
only half-understood doctrine, and, finally, 
despatch them either to heaven or to some de- 
serted spots in the western parts of the coun- 
try, as a reward for their faith. Where are 
now these unhappy heathens, who were but- 
chered by the Christians without commisera- 


lion ? Where are the descendants of Massa- 
soit, of Philip of Pokanoket, of Norridgewock 
— these Indian heroes ? Where shall we find 
a trace of these valiant and patriotic men, 
who fell in defence of country and liberty ? Not 
a solitary ruin of their huts has been left be- 
hind by the inhuman strang*ers — all has been 
levelled to the ground — every vestige is 
obliterated from civilized America. No canoe 
is seen on the majestic rivers — no fires kindled 
on the tops of mountains, as a rallying post 
for the warriors : nothing remains of all 
this, except, perhaps, the fragments of some 
blanched bones sometimes brought to light by 
the plough of the W^hites. They have set with 
the sun — even there they are persecuted ; and 
from the forests of the West, Black Hawk and 
the Prophet* have lately been brought in tri- 
umph round the country. Unfortunate peo- 
ple, whom Fate has condemned to disappear 
from the face of the earth without leaving the 
least trace of their existence ! In a short 
time, the Indian will lay down his bow, and 
slumber in eternity, without a mournful 
glance from child or friend. Solitary on this 
beautiful earth, among men who ought to be 

• Two celebrated Indian chiefs who were taken prisoners durin g 
the war 1832, and brought in chains to St. Louis. 


his brethren instead of his murderers, he casts 
his looks towards the West, where his God 
has promised him the bliss of Paradise, and 
sings a hymn, like the heroic female — the 
last of Norridgewock's race — who performed 
her own requiem. When the sun sets, he will 
be in Paradise. 


Ill the deep umbrage of a green hill's shade. 
Which shows a distant prospect far away 
Of busy cities, now in vain display'd. 
For they can hire no further ; and the ray 
Of a bright sun can make sufficient hoHday. 


I WAS now at length in America. The 
steamboat, which brought the passengers 
from the packet, landed us near a fashionable 
promenade, called the Battery, formerly a for- 
tified place. Even during the Dutch occupa- 
tion, this was considered a favourite spot, 
although surrounded by walls : in later times, 
when New York, by an increasing trade and 
wealth, and an easy communication with an 
extensive and cultivated back country, has 
become the first city in the United States, 
the Battery has less of a warlike appearance. 
Pleasant walks between rows of trees have 
been substituted for walls. From the extre- 
mity of the city, where the North and East 
Rivers form a junction, the most agree- 


able allees are laid out, commanding- one of 
the most extensive and beautiful views that 
can well be imagined. Towards the north 
end is a kind of bastion, formerly known by 
the name of Castle Clinton, now called Castle 
Garden, bein^ no more used as a military 
post, but merely as a place of recreation. On 
Sundays this public walk is filled with people 
of all classes, particularly those of the sable 
cast, making' a profuse exhibition of their 
finery. To the negroes, this place of resort 
is, something' like Hyde Park, near London, 
a place for show. Their dress, in general, 
borders on extravagance: the women wear 
bonnets decorated with ribbons, plumes, and 
flowers, of a thousand different colours, and 
their dresses are of the most showy descrip- 
tion : the men are attired like real French 
petitS'inaitres manques, the coats so open that 
the shirt sticks out under the arm-pits; 
the waistcoats are of all colours of the rain- 
bow ; the hat is carelessly put on one side ; 
the gloves are yellow, and every sable dandy 
carries a smart cane. At first, it was with 
difficulty I could refrain from laughing, on 
seeing these black heaux (the name by which 
they generally go) doing homage to the black 
housemaids or cooks, known as belles. One 


group in particular attracted my notice : their 
conversation appeared very animated, and 
the dark gentlemen, as well as the dark ladies, 
indulged in it with a liveliness and amiability 
which would not have disgraced even the first 
saloons in Paris. The former had chains 
round their necks (I will not vouch they were 
of gold) and canes in their hands — two 
indispensable things. The ladies made a 
fine exhibition of parasols, although no sun 
had been perceptible since the preceding- 
day. A great deal of flirtation and dis- 
play of wit seemed to be among the gentlemen, 
for the ladies were delighted and showed 
continually their white teeth. One of the 
beaux — a flat-nosed individual, with curly 
hair, extending at least four inches on each 
side his hat — excelled in civility and bons- 
mots. Whenever he uttered a sentence, the 
ladies were so convulsed with laughter that 
the plumes and other ornamental parts of 
their bonnets were actually displaced. His 
eyes, if J mistake not, were invariably fixed 
upon a lusty, ordinary, Donna, a great ad- 
mirer of his repeated witticisms. Some- 
times he addressed to her a word or two 
privately, and, when this occurred, she looked 
down abashed, and had recourse to her pocket- 


handkerchief. These symptoms of modesty 
threw the lover in raptures, and his eloquence 
became as flowing as the North River. His 
gestures partook of the theatrical, and his 
feet followed the action of the hands. I ex- 
pected every moment to see an attitude a la 
Taglioni, and anticipated the pleasure of 
witnessing a love-declaration from this Afri- 
can, as the result of so many tender looks, 
such classic effusion of wit, so many fatiguing 
evolutions. In the midst of these expecta- 
tions, however, I felt a drop or two of rain, and, 
looking up, perceived a dark cloud which 
threatened us with a heavy shower. The 
speaker began also to be uneasy, having 
already seen the effect on his straw-coloured 
gloves ; and, abruptly concluding his ha- 
rangue, prosaically addressed the fair : 
'' Had we not better retreat ? — we shall be 
deluged with rain." He then politely offered 
his arm to the object of his affection, and, fol- 
lowed by the rest of the company, they all 
wandered up Broadway in the midst of one 
of those sudden and drenching showers so 
frequent in America. 

Broadway is the principal street in New 
York : it runs through the City in a parallel di- 
rection, about three miles in length, bordered 


by hotels, houses, and churches, and embel- 
lished with shops of every description, tastefully 
arranged. The street is neatly paved with wide 
side-walks, filled with carriages, omnibuses, 
and pedestrians without number, and patron- 
ised by the all-powerful goddess, Fashion. 
This thoroughfare is, without exception, one 
of the finest that can be seen, and deserves the 
honour of comparison with Regent's Street in 
London, the Corso in Rome, and theStrado To- 
ledo at Naples. It commences at the Battery, or 
more properly runs from a small square called 
the Bowling Green ; in the middle of this 
place was formerly a statue erected to the 
honour of one of the kings of England 
(George III.) : but during the revolution it 
was demolished, and the metal of which it was 
composed converted into cannon. The spot is 
now only surrounded by an iron railing and a 
few scattered trees. Further up in Broad- 
way is another square or opening called the 
Park, in which is City Hall — an edifice ap- 
propriated to public offices. It is of white 
marble, and produces a fine effect at a dis- 
tance. The defects in the architecture, which 
is rather upon a confined scale, cannot then 
be perceived : it is only upon closer inspection 
that they become striking. 


The houses in New York are generally 
small, and resemble the English a good deal. 
The new ones, now building in the upper part 
of the City, are intended to be upon a larger 
scale. Wooden houses are prohibited, on ac- 
count of the frequency of fires ; few are seen 
built of this material, and they are generally 
in by-streets. The buildings are of brick, 
three stories high. The exterior of many is 
neither whitewashed nor painted, but coloured 
red and white, which gives them the appear- 
ance of being plastered. A low iron railing 
leads from the steps round the house, about 
one yard from the wall ; and many of these 
steps are of white marble. The interior is 
chiefly in the English style, both floors and 
staircases being covered with that agreeable 
article of luxury — carpets. The kitchens are 
in the basement, below the level of the streets. 
In most streets I found houses in course of 
building, so that the exterior of New York 
has at least a new appearance, although in the 
opinion of a European it may not be so hand- 
some as if the buildings were painted white. 
Poor dwellings, such as are so frequently 
seen in the principal cities in Europe, and of 
which Stockholm can furnish its quota, I did 
not perceive; the rising prosperity of the 


town, and the constant conflagrations, gra- 
dually diminish their number. The singular 
locality of New York, between two rivers, 
obliges a large portion of her population, 
annually on the increase, to remove in the 
only direction that is left. The upper part is 
gradually becoming the place of residence of 
the wealthier classes, and may not inaptly be 
termed the west end of New York. 

Cooper, in his work, " Notions of the Ame- 
ricans,'' says, " I have been told, and think 
it not improbable, that the city of New York 
does not contain five hundred buildings which 
can date their origin before the peace of 
1783;"'"' and this statement is, in my opinion, 
far from being exaggerated. 

The principal hotels, situated in Broadway, 
are, as far as the exterior is concerned, not 
unlike the celebrated establishments of a 
similar description at Francfort on the Main. 
The comforts are, however, inferior to those 
in Europe ; in all I found a defect which, in 
a climate so warm as this at times, is as disa- 
greeable as it is pernicious to the health — 
the bed-rooms are invariably too small. 
They are often so diminutive, that from his 
bed the tenant may step out of the window. 

• Notions of the Americans, by a Travelling Bachelor, vol. i. 


Had Sir John FalstafF lived in our times, his 
bulky frame would, unquestionably, have got 
entangled between the wall and the bed. 
The walls of the sleeping rooms are in most 
cases only whitewashed, and the furniture 
consists of a few rattan chairs and a table ; 
but they are always carpeted. An American 
seldom complains of the want of additional 
furniture, being hardly ever in the room, 
except at night ; most of the hours of the day 
he either attends to business or passes his 
time in a parlour, simply but tastefully fur- 
nished, something like the drawing-rooms in 

It is a common practice in America to live 
in what is called boarding houses, or private 
families, where a certain sum is paid for 
meals, &c., whether you dine there or not. 
The breakfast is at seven, half-past seven, and 
eight o'clock ; dinner from two to five. I 
often wondered how families could find any 
comfort in living in this way the greatest part 
of their time, when the interchange of 
strangers is so continual, and the society so 
varied. In Europe, a similar existence would 
be considered intolerable. To a lady it must 
nevertheless have its attractions. She passes 
her whole life without once giving herself the 

VOL. I. D 


trouble of thinking of the concerns of her 
house. Even some of the first and wealthiest 
families in New York spend occasionally many 
weeks, or months, at an hotel, whenever their 
own house is undergoing repairs, or, as was 
the case now, when driven from their homes 
by the approach of the cholera. Few people 
have country seats : rather than hire one, and 
enjoy the benefit of tranquillity and a free 
and unshackled life, a family, with children 
and servants, prefer taking up temporary 
quarters at some hotel or tavern in a neigh- 
bouring small town or village. A person 
arriving from the Old World cannot help 
wondering at this strange, and, in his opi- 
nion, highly dependent way of living. I can 
account for it in no other manner than that it 
must be a saving of expense to the husband, 
and of trouble to the wife. Be this as it may, 
each country has its customs, which must be 
respected by every foreigner, however opposed 
to his notions and habits, and however sin- 
gular and absurd. In France, John Bull's 
comfortable practice of taking wine after 
dinner is ridiculed, while Englishmen con- 
sider a Frenchman, with all his vivacity, a 
foolish being. An Italian exclaims with 
astonishment, '' Corpo di Bacco /" whenever 


he sees an inhabitant of the north take a drop 
of brandy before dinner; and the latter is not 
less surprised at the sight of the numerous 
cavalieri serventi which surround the wife of 
the former. Is it then to be wondered at if 
a European finds many strange things in the 
United States ? But, to criticise or censure 
all these indiscriminately, as late travellers 
have done, merely because they are not in 
harmony with the customs of London, Paris, 
or Vienna, is as unreasonable as the expec- 
tations of a certain foreigner, who thought 
it very extraordinary not to find the very 
best Lafitte or Chateau Margot at every 
petty ale-house in the remotest part of En- 

The situation of this large town, which, 
within the memory of man, has trebled its 
population, promises a greater increase of 
trade than any other city in the Union. In 
the year 1831, there arrived from foreign parts 
no less than one thousand six hundred and 
thirty-four vessels ; in 1833, the number had 
augmented to one thousand nine hundred 
and twenty-five, of which one thousand three 
hundred and eighty-four were American, 
three hundred and seventy-one English, forty- 
one Swedish, and thirty -five Spanish, con- 

D 2 


scquently, an accession in two years of 
two hundred and forty-one vessels. The 
number of passengers, which in the course 
of 1833 arrived at New York, was forty- 
one thousand seven hundred and fifty-two ; 
the greatest number landed in June, July, and 
August ; and the smallest in January, Fe- 
bruary, and March. This exhibits a great 
increase: from the 1st of October, 1821, to 
the same period, 1822, no more than eight 
* thousand four hundred and eighty-two pas- 
sengers in all came to the ports of the United 

One of the first evenings, after landing, I 
spent on the banks of the majestic Hudson. 
There is something attractive and inspiring 
in this stream. From Broadway, which, as 
I have before observed, commences at the 
Battery, and traverses the whole city, there is 
a road leading to a small hamlet called Man- 
hattanville. On proceeding in this direction, 
several places present themselves, from which 
the romantic scenery of the North River is 
viewed in all its perfection. From one hotel 
in particular, whence a footpath has been 
traced which takes the visiter to a rock close 
to the shore, the prospect is truly enchanting. 
But, from no place did the Hudson appear to 


me to greater advantage than from Hoboken, 
a delightful spot on the New Jersey side, 
opposite to New York, between which and the 
city steamboats are continually plying. The 
proprietor of this beautiful retreat, emphati- 
cally called the Elysian Fields, Mr. Stephens, 
with a liberality worthy of his high standing 
in society, has thrown open the whole range 
of extensive park to the public ; and it is in 
the summer season, to the inhabitants of New 
York, one of the greatest recreations that 
can well be imagined, and for which they 
must ever remain greatly indebted to this 
high-spirited gentleman. Nothing can ex- 
ceed the taste — the matchless taste — with 
which the gardens and walks, aided by the 
hand of Nature, are laid out. The perspec- 
tive view of Staten [sland, of Long Island, 
of the Bay of New York, of the City itself, 
with all its steeples, of New Jersey City, of 
all the shipping, on one side ; and of the River 
Hudson, and all its tributary beauties, 
intermingled with steamers, sloops, and 
pleasure-boats on the other, presents to the 
delighted and astonished eye a panorama of 
such unparalleled and variegated splendour, 
that it baffles all description. The noise 
inseparable from large cities could at times 


be heard across the stream. 1 listened, and 
recollected these beautiful lines of Horace : — 

Beatus ille qui, procul negotiis, 

Vt prisca gens mortalium, 
Pateina rura bobus exercet suis, 

Solutus omni fcenore. 

But, as soon as the sun had set, and the 
moon began to rise in ail her brightness, the 
scene became still more beautiful. From 
elevated chimneys, attached to numerous 
glass and iron manufactories on the opposite 
shores, issued columns of fire, which illu- 
minated the whole range of contiguous build- 
ings ; great masses of flakes also burst forth 
from the passing steamers, and accompanied 
them on their swift course, like the appendage 
to a comet. The whole had the appearance 
of the commencement of a great conflagra- 
tion ; the City and stream seemed threatened 
with being suddenly enveloped in flames and 
smoke. This dream of imagination chilled 
me for a moment, and I turned my eyes away 
from the sight ; but, once more looking up, I 
beheld the silent moon calmly glittering on 
the surface of the Hudson, and I continued to 
enjoy the happiness of contemplating a picture 
to which nothing could be compared. The 
freshness of the evening, the stillness of the 


leaves, the beauty of dormant Nature sur- 
rounding* me on every side, and, lastly, my 
own state of mind, all contributed to fix me 
for a long while as a silent spectator. At 
length I was overtaken by the lateness of 
night, and unwillingly left a spot combining 
so many attractions. With lively emotion, I 
still remember the richly overshadowed tree, 
whose wide-spread branches sheltered me 
during my deep meditation ; and also the 
mossy rock on which I rested, in full admira- 
tion of the scene before me. It seemed as if I 
heard a voice softly whispering the following 
lines of Bryant, one of America's poetical 
sons : — 

River ! in this still hour thou hast 
Too much of heaven, on earth to last ; 
Nor long maj' thy still waters lie. 
An image of the glorious sky : 
Thy fate and mine are not repose. 
And, ere another evening close. 
Thou to thy tide shalt turn again. 
And I to seek the crowd of men. 

The cholera raged in the meanwhile with 
dreadful violence in New York. This epide- 
mic had been brought over to America by an 
English ship, which landed a number of emi- 
grants at Quebec. A few days after their 
arrival, the disease broke out, and shortly 
afterwards made its appearance in New 


York. It is contended that some of the pas- 
sengers, having' relatives in the latter city, 
quitted Quebec immediately on a visit to 
them. This is the manner in which the sud- 
den breaking out of the cholera at New York 
has been accounted for. The physicians 
were all the time divided in opinion as to the 
nature of the disorder, whether it was con- 
tagious or not : all insisted on the correct- 
ness of their conclusions — the advocates of 
non-contagion by contact, but possibly by 
inhaling the breath, seemed finally to pre- 

When it is considered that more than half 
the population of the city left it under the 
influence of fear, it may indeed be said that 
this visitation caused the greatest havock 
and consternation. From the 26th June, the 
day when the first bulletin was issued by the 
Medical Board, up to the 29th August follow- 
ing, when the official reports were discon- 
tinued, the number of cases were no less than 
five thousand nine hundred and twenty-eight, 
and deaths two thousand nine hundred and 
fifty-one. On my arrival at New York, the 
cholera was greatly on the increase ; and, on 
the 21st July, there were one hundred and 
four victims, and three hundred and eleven 


new cases. Accounts from unquestionable 
authority stated, however, that the majority 
of persons who sunk under this alarming dis- 
ease were generally individuals of debilitated 
constitutions, who had indulged in the vice of 
intemperance and its concomitants ; but, ne- 
vertheless, it not unfrequently occurred that 
even men of regular and exemplary habits 
were snatched away by its baneful effects. 

New York could not boast of any particular 
cleanliness during the prevalence of the 
afflicting disorder ; and, as it is well known 
that the want of it materially contributes to 
its duration, this neglect gave, perhaps, addi- 
tional vigour to the virulence. I certainly do 
not mean to infer that New York is inferior 
in point of cleanliness to places that meet the 
eye of a traveller in Italy, Ireland, and other 
countries : even Paris and London, in some 
of the obscure purlieus, exhibit sometimes a 
filthy appearance. I cannot, however, refrain 
from remarking that, when I saw a variety 
of uncleanly matter thrown from the houses 
into the street, (recalling almost to mind a 
sejour at Lisbon) and this too during the 
worst time of the cholera, I could not but 
make melancholy anticipations of its ravages. 
** Experience has proved," was the answer 


made to my observation of its impropriety, 
** that hogs always keep the streets of a town 
in a state of perfect cleanliness." And, upon 
the strength of this argument, the unseemly 
animals enjoy, in this rising city, a free and 
independent life — at perfect liberty to per- 
ambulate the thoroughfares and indulge in 
hearty repasts on offals of every description 
thrown in, and streaming down the gutters 
in offensive abundance, and this too in the 
midst of coaches, horses, and pedestrians. 
The following ludicrous paragraph, illustra- 
tive of this nuisance, and addressed to one of 
the editors of a New York newspaper, ap- 
peared during my residence in that city. 

To the Editor of 

Sir, — Permit me to inquire, through the medium of your cohnnns, 
whether the vvorth}^ corporation of this city has, in its wisdom, lately 
granted any particular license to the proprietors of certain animals, 
the name of which I feel hesitation in mentioning, for daily exhibi- 
tions in the principal streets of New York- 
Groups of these unseemly quadrupeds congregate, as if by ap- 
pointment, at all hours in various directions, but more particularly 
in the immediate vicinity of the City Hall; and, by their unceasing 
grunting, seem to vociferate the high sense of gratitude they feel 
towards the constituted and ever-watchful authorities for the unre- 
strained liberty they enjoy under a free and happy constitution, in 
being allowed, without interruption, to perambulate every avenue 
in defiance of the wishes of the well-organised citizens; and in 
being able, moreover, by the aid of their natural perfume, effectually 
to counteract and nuUifij all the chlorides and other disinfecting 
matters — so absolutely necessary upon the ])resent calamitous 


Shall it be said of the western metropolis — as this city is empha- 
ticall}' called — that by the side of a handsome American lady- 
attired in all the ele^^ance and variety of London and Parisian 
fashions— or in the suite of an exquisite dandy, calculated to eclipse 
even a finished beau of Bond Street or Regent Street — shall it be 
said, I ask, that in this assemblage is seen a group of animals of the 
filthiest order, unceremoniously splashing the elegant costume of the 
one, and as unconcernedly discomposuig, by friction, the well adjusted 
garments of the other. The idea is monstrous. For Heaven's sake, 
Mr. Editor, spare no pains to have the evil removed instanter, or 
rest assured Mrs. TroUope will wet her quill, and prepare another 
chapter to her work. 


In Boston, the cleanliness of the streets is 
properly attended to : they mig'ht serve as a 
pattern to any city in the world. 

The cholera had converted bustlinp* and 
animated New York into a place of gloom and 
dulness, the effect of which was seriously felt 
by those who, from some reason or other, had 
to remain behind, and could not follow the 
multitude that fled from the pestiferous air to 
contiguous villages near the sea. A dark 
cloud appeared to overhang the city — every 
countenance bore the stamp of fear. Broad- 
way, invariably crowded, was now deserted, 
like the streets in Pompeii ; and the few indi- 
viduals that were visible passed each other 
with a singular rapidity, as if afraid of infec- 
tion by contact. Numerous houses were en- 
tirely shut up, and rows of shops not opened 
for several days. Closed doors and shutters 


indicated that the tenants had fled, and, but 
for the name still fresh on the former, it 
might have been inferred that the occupants 
had been dead long ago. The silence which 
pervaded every avenue was dismal in the 
extreme : it was only occasionally interrupted 
by a discordant concert from perambulating 
quadrupeds of the race just mentioned. No 
living being ever appeared in the windows of 
houses, still occupied in part ; and if by 
chance the head of a Negro ventured to show 
itself out of a cellar, it was generally under a 
strong apprehension that contagion might 
possibly follow. No workshops were in 
activity — all the steam-engines were stand- 
ing still : no trade, no bustle. Every thing 
was dead. Here and there a few individuals 
were seen, engaged in an animated conversa- 
tion : if the question was asked, '* what sub- 
ject ?" The Cholera. At another place might 
be seen a silent, solid-looking man, leaning 
against an iron railing, apparently engaged 
in serious thought about some extensive com- 
mercial operations, or banking speculations. 
If asked, ''what occupied his mind?" he 
would answer, " The cholera.'' Again, a wo- 
man might be discovered, carrying a child in 
her arms, and ev idently in a hurry to attend 


to some important business : turning round at 
every step, and pressing the infant to her 
breast, pale as death. If asked, " what she 
was afraid of?" she would answer, " The cho- 
lera.'' Every newspaper treated of no other 
subject than the cholera. If a miserable 
object was lying in the street, suffering under 
the double calamity of poverty and disease, 
instead of lending him assistance, people 
would run away and leave him to his fate. 
Why ? Because he had got the cholera. If 
the driv er of a simple and unattended hearse 
was seen accelerating the speed of his horses, 
the question was asked, " Why does he go so 
fast ?" Because the hearse contains a number 
of dead, victims to the cholera ; they must im- 
mediately go to the burying ground, without 
ceremony and without friends. 


Could the ceaseless vultures cease to prey. 
On self-condemning bosoms, it were here. 
Where Nature, nor too sombre, nor too gay. 
Wild but not rude, awful yet not austere, 
Is to the mellow Earth as Autumn to the year. 


I SOON left the ill-fated city, and took my 
departure in one of the numerous steamboats 
which are daily plying on the Hudson. No- 
thing* can exceed the elegance of these boats ; 
those we have in Europe are as inferior to 
them as a gun-brig to a frigate. But the 
steamers that run from New York are much 
smaller than those on the Mississippi and 
Ohio. The largest of the former are the 
President of above 170, and the North Ame- 
rica of 150, horse power. The trips of the 
first are to New Providence, whither she pro- 
ceeds during night-time : births for several 
hundred passengers are arranged on each 
side of the dining-room, which extends nearly 
the whole length of the boat. The latter 


again only runs in the day-time, and is fitted 
up with every degree of taste and elegance. 
Both have double decks, that is, a small one 
built above the other, covered with awnings, 
on which the passengers may walk in the cool 
air. The ladies' cabin is generally on a level 
with the lower deck, but in some boats it is 
on the other side of the dining-room. The 
saloon, in the North America, is peculiar for 
its magnificence. Mahogany, and a variety 
of other beautiful wood, in imitation of marble, 
is displayed in every direction, and between 
each window are pictures painted by good 

Most of the steamers have two boilers, one 
on each side the lower deck. The machinery 
is generally above deck ; and the large walk- 
ing-beam moves up and down, in the open air, 
between the two chimneys, which rise to a 
considerable height on each side of the boat. 
The trip of the North America is generally 
to Albany, a distance of about one hundred 
and forty-seven English miles, which she per- 
forms in ten hours and a half, including stop- 
pages at landing places. She has even done 
it in ten. 

Punctuality on board these boats is observed 
in the highest degree. The clock had hardly 


finished striking five, before the paddles were 
in motion, and the boat slipped out of the 
harbour with the same ease as when a ship is 
launched. No indulgence, no favour, was 
shown to persons who had the misfortune to 
come half a minute too late ; they were left 
behind without mercy, and had the mortifica- 
tion of admiring the swiftness of the boat, 
and her fine appearance, at a distance. It 
was a truly ludicrous scene to behold all these 
gentry, " who were just in time to be too late," 
with bundles, carpet-bags, and bandboxes, 
remaining stationary on shore, faintly hoping 
that the captain, out of pity, might stop the 
machinery and take them on board. Vain 
were their hopes: the captain threw the blame 
on the clock, which, it is well known, waits 
for none. Perspiring, and puffing under the 
weight of their loads, they at length returned 
to their homes, and had at least the satisfac- 
tion of meeting, on the way, a number of 
others in the same predicament, hastening to 
the spot in hopes of catching the boat. 

I was now on board with several hundred 
passengers, of every station, age, and sex. 
The apprehension of the cholera had already 
driven a great many from the city ; and such 
was the terror still prevailing, that I feel 


satisfied at least two thirds of the persons 
present had no idea of leaving New York but 
for this untoward occurrence. In this opi- 
nion I was the more confirmed, when I took 
a review of the numberless trunks and bags 
which rose on deck in the shape of a pyramid. 
The major part of these travelling append- 
ages had reached a comfortable age, and 
might, without fear of misrepresentation, be 
supposed to have accompanied some of the 
first settlers who landed on the American 
coast from England. Assuredly, these anti- 
quities would never have seen the light, 
but for the general consternation. Many a 
trunk, if the name may be applied, might be 
seen, whose decayed bottom had severely suf- 
fered by the destructive hand of Time, and 
was only attached to the sides by being 
strongly corded ; but, maugre this precaution, 
not a few white dresses and Merino shawls 
were peeping out at the corners. Cob- 
webs and mildew were still perceptible, the 
hurry of departure not having permitted 
their removal. The locks, too, were of the 
simplest make, and to all appearance manu- 
factured at a time when the spirit of invention 
had^not arrived at its climax ; they were, be- 
sides, so rusty and filled with dirt, that it was 

VOL. I. E 


a matter of surprise to me how the keys could 
possibly fit. 

The owners of these precious relics were 
equally objects of curiosity ; they were com- 
posed of hack-drivers, paviours, lamplighters, 
masons, carpenters, &c., having all wives and 
children in Sunday clothes. No distinction 
of rank between these and the other passen- 
gers was perceptible ; one is as good as ano- 
ther. The company mixed indiscriminately, 
and the driver considered himself as fine a 
gentleman as the first dandy on board. This 
equality was particularly observable at the 
tea-table. A young American, with whom I 
had been in company a few days before in 
one of the first houses in New York, was 
seated at the long table between two females, 
one the wife of a driver, the other that of a 
lamplighter, both past the age when young- 
men are generally flattered at being near the 
elbow of a belle. I saw him, with perfect at- 
tention, serve both his fair neighbours before 
he thought of himself, and, during the whole 
repast, continue his civilities with so much 
grace, that the example might serve as a sa- 
lutary lesson to many a European coxcomb, 
who certainly will not put himself to inconve- 
nience for the sake of being attentive to 


females of so mediocre a station in life, and 
to whom nature has beside^ refused the 
advantage of beauty. A young Frenchman, 
who came to America about the same time I 
did, could not help remarking to the Ameri- 
can, that he was surprised at seeing a man 
of birth, of blood, condescend so far as to enter 
into conversation with a couple of vulgar 
women. The American answered, that it 
appeared to him equally extraordinary how 
a man of birth could ever forget the respect 
due to every female by a person of education, 
let her rank be what it will in society. " Ci- 
vility to all women," added he, " is considered 
in America as a distinctive proof of a well-bred 
man." The Frenchman retired confused, 
without saying a word, only shrugging his 
shoulders, as if to say that he by no means 
admitted the propriety of a similar conde- 

The Hudson continues wide for a consider- 
able distance ; its breadth, until near the 
Highlands, may be said to be about one Eng- 
lish mile, or more. The eastern shore is well 
cultivated, and presents to the eye a succes- 
sion of smiling landscapes. Most of the hills 
are covered with verdure and fruit trees ; and, 
from the remotest woods down to the river, 

E 2 


nothing is seen but corn-fields, pastures, and 
gardens, in the midst of which beautiful 
country seats are situated. Villages, em- 
bowered among trees, are now and then 
visible ; and the reflection of the setting sun 
on their pointed steeples makes them appear as 
if rising from the midst of a forest. Rivulets 
meander in various directions, and fertilize the 
fields. The prospect on the western shore of 
the river is, however, quite different : there, 
a chain of perpendicular rocks, about five 
hundred feet high, follows the direction of the 
stream for nearly twenty miles. They are not 
unlike artificial breastworks, and are therefore 
called Palisades. They stretch sometimes 
downright into the river, sometimes retire 
a few paces, leaving only sufficient place for 
the residence of a few scattered stonecutters. 
Some of their houses are built against the 
rock, so that one of the walls is formed 
thereof. A few huts are visible here and 
there ; and, to complete the picturesque view, 
cattle are sometimes seen at a small distance, 
seeking a scanty subsistence between the 
crevices ; or children, joyfully jumping from 
one rock to another. A habitation like the 
one just described must naturally appear very 
confined and uncomfortable to a traveller 


viewing it from the steamboat ; but, if the 
healthy and strong inmate is asked whether 
he is happy there, he will undoubtedly answer 
that, as long as he is permitted to behold the 
majestic Hudson flowing below his retreat, 
all his wishes are realized. 

Yes, majestic indeed is this river ; nor does 
it in the least surprise me that the Indians 
had so high an opinion of it, since, according 
to their own traditions, their god Manetho 
betook himself to flight, when the river, like 
a supernatural being, descended from the 
rocks with frightful noise, and took possession 
of the dales and fields below. The poetical 
part in these old traditions of the Highlands, 
of which I propose speaking hereafter, shows 
what power they granted to the God of 
Waters ; and this respect, which they inva- 
riably observed, was, after he had conquered 
all the country round Manhattan, and go- 
verned his kingdom in peace and quiet, 
changed into a majestic veneration : to this 
circumstance may probably be attributed the 
surname Majestic^ now synonymous with the 
river Hudson. 

On my right, I observed the four square 
walls of Sing Sing prison, and not far 
from them the village of Sparta; further 


on, the Sleepy Hollow, where the spirit of 
Ichabod Cranes* is still haunted by the head- 
less spectre of a Hessian dragoon. I fancied 
I saw the tall slim schoolmaster, with narrow 
shoulders, long arms and legs, hands which 
hung a mile below the sleeves, feet which 
might be used as spades, with a head uncom- 
monly small and flat, a pair of enormous ears, 
large green shining eyes, and a long parrot 
nose, resembling a weathercock on a high 
pole, showing which way the wind blows. I 
fancied I saw this gaunt figure haunted by the 
headless unknown, and working with hands 
and feet to preserve his equilibrium on a horse 
after the saddle had been lost; sometimes 
slipping on one side, then on another, again 
leaning over the horse's head, then shook to 
pieces against the thin knots of his hind legs. 
Washington Irving's excellent description 
appeared so natural when I passed this place, 
that I could not refrain from indulging in 
a hearty laugh. A few serious Quakers and 
Quakeresses, who happened to be close to me 
on deck, seemingly contemplating the beauti- 
ful picture before them, were suddenly roused 
by my unexpected fit of laughter ; and gave 

• Vide the account of Washington Irving, in his Sketch 
Book, vol. ii. 


me looks perfectly indicative of what they 
thought. They concluded, probably, that I 
was a maniac ; for they exchanged signs, 
shook their heads as if expressing pity, and 
then resumed their former attitudes. My 
first idea was to say a few words by way of 
explanation, but I checked my intention upon 
a second reflection. " These people," said I, 
" care very little about the fate of Ichabod : 
they are probably so religious that they 
never read a word about him ; explanation is 
therefore unnecessary." I let the matter rest, 
but could not help thinking once more of the 
haunted schoolmaster. 

The steamboat neared the Highlands. The 
river is here contracted between the rugged 
heights. I do not doubt but some violent 
revolution in former times has caused this 
narrow passage, leaving a small opening to 
the stream to discharge itself in the sea. 
Tradition relates as follows : — " These high 
rocks were in ancient times used by King 
Manetho as prisons for rebellious spirits, dis- 
satisfied with his mild rule. For several 
centuries, they were left to repine under the 
weight of the heavy rocks. But Hudson 
proved their friend ; he destroyed by the 
roar of thunder these dreadful prisons. Since 


that period, they have enjoyed unrestrained 
liberty, but still tremble whenever the ele- 
ments are agitated, .fearful that Manetho 
might return, and renew their imprisonment 
in their dark dungeons. The echoes inces- 
santly heard between the mountains are 
nothing but expressions of lamentation and 
fear on the part of the spirits at the most 
trifling noise." 

These mountainous parts are not unlike 
the shores on the Rhine from Bonn to Cob- 
lentz. Mountains follow in succession: be- 
tween them are sheltered dales. Bushes and 
trees cover the walls of the rocks almost to 
the tops. From some of the woods may be 
seen the ruins of small fortifications, which 
were used during the revolutionary war. At 
another point in the river is a simple monu- 
ment, to the memory of some fallen warrior ; 
(almost every spot in these Highlands recalls 
some deed of valour during the struggle for 
liberty). Further on, a loosened piece of rock 
overhangs the river, ready to attempt once 
more to close the passage. 

Darkness overtook us, as soon as we came 
between the mountains. The sun had set 
long ago, and in the western horizon rose a 
mass of clouds, which announced the aj)proach 


of a storm. Gradually, the lightning became 
more vivid, and a threatening black sky 
spread in a few minutes over forests and 
mountains. All Nature trembled at the awful 
perspective, and all that had life on shore 
hastened to take shelter in grottoes and 
crevices. Fireflies, which shone and disap- 
peared more rapidly than thought could follow 
them, ceased to show their brilliancy against 
the green trees; even these trifling insects, 
which lightning could hardly strike, felt awe 
at the storm, and went to rest. Every animal 
seemed to take shelter in some hiding place : 
to man alone it was reserved to defy the 
united attacks of the elements, and to venture 
a look towards the agitated heavens. Several 
steamers passed me : their lamps in the stern, 
ahead, and in the mast, appeared in the dark 
as magic lights. Our steamboat also had 
similar lamps, which produced on the nearest 
objects a feeble and gloomy light. From both 
chimneys issued millions of sparks in an irre- 
gular dance ; like gold dust, they spread over 
the stream, and expired the moment they 
reached the surface of the water. Thunder 
was heard above our heads, and lightning 
seen in every direction proceeding from the 
heavy clouds ; forests and rocks, and valleys 


and streams, grew pale every time the West- 
ern Deity shook the heavenly lights out of his 
mighty hand. But in the East a storm was 
also gathering. Jealous of the conquests of 
the West, it rose from a long rest, to dispute 
the ascendancy assumed by the latter. A 
few unexpected flashes from the opposite 
shore announced the commencement of hosti- 
lities ; the West, offended at the temerity of 
its antagonist, advanced at once with its 
whole artillery, determined to crush, by a few 
effectual discharges, its slowly advancing 
adversary. The conflict was dreadful : each 
minute added to its obstinacy and fury. 
Often did I presume that preliminaries of 
peace had been concluded between the con- 
tending parties, but the next moment I was 
convinced to the contrary. From summit to 
summit — from rock to rock — the thunder 
roared, and each stone seemed to re-echo it. 
It was a concert ; an accompaniment of vari- 
ous instruments, like a complete orchestra, 
which I could fain attempt to describe. Rain 
fell in torrents ; the whole was awful and 
imposing in the extreme, and characteristic of 
those sudden tempests or storms which so 
often visit the Western hemisphere. It was 
only after two hours' hard fighting that the 


contest ceased between the belligerents above ; 
and victory declared in favour of the AVest, 
by the appearance of a beautiful blue sky, 
and a few stars glittering over the field of 
battle. The beaten legions of the East re- 
treated in haste, pursued by the elated vic- 
tors, who put them in confusion. Their 
triumphant shouts gradually gave way, and, 
when I shortly afterwards looked up, not a 
cloud could be seen ; the whole firmament was 
covered with brilliant stars. 

" Passengers for West Point!" was now 
heard from one end of the boat to the other. 
I hastened on deck, collected my baggage, 
and went on shore. 


Can you so watch 
The sunrise which may be our last ? 

It is 
Therefore that I so watch it, and reproach 
Those eyes which never may behold it more 
For having look'd upon it oft, too oft. 
Without the reverence and the rapture due 
To that which keeps all earth from being as fragile 
As I am in this form. 


The Academy of Cadets is situated on this 
spot, and occupies a tolerably extensive plain, 
a few hundred yards above the river, at the 
foot of a mountain, intersected with wood. 
A number of brick houses have been built for 
this purpose, and in front is a spacious piece 
of ground, adopted for drilling and other 
military exercises. A few tents were pitched 
for the Cadets, then going through various 
evolutions ; and not far from this spot is the 
" corps de garde/' before which some of them, 
in grey uniforms, were seen walking, guard- 
ing the avenue to the camp. 


Captain Hall, in his published Travels in 
North America, 1827 and 1828, criticises, 
perhaps not altogether without foundation, 
their deficiency in " tenue militaire," They 
wear a kind of military cap, so small in size, 
that, in order not to lose it, they are obliged 
to let the fore part rest on the nose, thus 
leaving the whole neck bare. This objection- 
able fashion has not been found so useful as 
was expected ; the greatest part of the Cadets 
appeared to me to have narrow chests and 
were rather round-shouldered : two defects 
which among European officers are strongly 
objected to. This Academy is the only one of 
its kind in the United States, and is main- 
tained at the expense of the government. 
The avowed object is not only to give young 
men, destined for military service, a perfect 
education in various branches, but to keep 
up and disseminate all over the country a 
correct and sound knowledge of this science. 
Captain Hall seems to question whether 
America will ever derive any real advantage 
from this institution, and endeavours to show, 
in the usual laboured way, his reasons for so 
thinking. I am far from being of his opinion, 
and cannot see why the community should 
fail being benefited by an Academy, conducted 


with SO much care and attention, and the 
professors of which are men of first-rate 
talents, chosen and esteemed by their coun- 

The number of Cadets is limited to two 
hundred and fifty. None can be received 
unless he has attained his fourteenth year. 
The President of the United States reserves 
to himself the right of granting admissions to 
this Academy, and generally endeavours to 
divide an equal number of candidates for each 
State. They attend to their studies for a 
period of four years, during which time they 
are instructed in mathematics, geography, his- 
tory, philosophy, chemistry, and mineralogy ; 
the French language, drawing, the art of for- 
tification, &c. If any one belonging to either 
of the four classes cannot pass his examina- 
tion, notice is given to his relations to remove 
him from the Academy, where it is considered 
he can be of no use. If again he goes re- 
gularly through the ordeal, he is entitled to 
employment by government. Stored with the 
knowledge he has acquired, he is now sent to 
places where it can be made available. Not 
only is he commanded to proceed to the peo- 
pled and cultivated Eastern States, but, like 
productive corn, is scattered over the whole 


range of country, and often obliged to settle 
in the remotest parts, among woodcutters in 
Michigan and Missouri. It would indeed be 
singular, if, in this manner, no good result 
should follow ; it must be the case, although I 
cannot help thinking that the maximum of 
two hundred and fifty cadets is too inconsi- 
derable for such a country as the United 
States, to effect all the good that might be 
derived, if the number were two thousand 
^ve hundred instead of two hundred and fifty. 
Time will probably change this system, when 
America finds that the hopes she entertained 
of this useful national institution have not been 

The scenery round West Point is extremely 
romantic. The mountain, at the foot of which 
the Academy is situated, is covered with wood, 
in the midst of which the ruins of Fort Put- 
nam may be seen ; this was an important post 
during the war with the English, but has since 
been abandoned. The prospect from this 
fort is very extensive, but cannot, in my opi- 
nion, be compared to the one from the balcony 
of the hotel. This hotel is recently built over 
a projecting cliff near the river, on a level 
with the Academy. From this balcony is a 
fine view of the Hudson, confined between the 


two walls of the Highlands ; and at a distance 
the little town of Newburgh. A few white 
sails were visible spread over the smooth 
surface, now and then agitated by numberless 
steamers, passing in that direction. On the 
opposite shore, I saw elevated chimneys be- 
longing to an extensive iron-foundry for cast- 
ing cannon ; and the report of the guns which 
underwent trial resembled that of the thun- 
der-storm I had witnessed during my trip to 
West Point. As the noise re-echoed through 
the surrounding mountains, I thought I heard 
the frightened cries of the emancipated spirits, 
who, at the least alarm, trembled in fear that 
Manetho would once more return and load 
them with chains. At a little distance is 
Antony's Nose, a projecting rock, so called 
from a remarkable circumstance which is 
reported to have occurred here, namely, that 
the trumpeter, Antony Van Corlear, by means 
of the reflexion of the sunbeams on his shining- 
nose, killed a large sturgeon, who happened 
to be in the neighbourhood.* On this side of 
the river is also a simple monument erected 
to the memory of Kosciusko : the noble and 
gallant Pole lived here several years, remote 

• Vide Knickerbocker's New York, vol. ii. 



from his own unhappy country, and afterwards 
recrossed the Atlantic, and took up his resi- 
dence at Soleure, in Switzerland, where he 
closed a glorious career in the year 1817, en- 
joying at last in death that repose, the sweets 
of which he could not taste while alive, and 
seeing his beloved country subjugated, muti- 
lated, reduced to slavery. 

I spent a few days delightfully at this 
charming place, more and more pleased with 
the beautiful prospect. The steamboat, how- 
ever, arriving from New York, I was obliged 
to take my leave. 1 quitted West Point most 
unwillingly, and went again on board for the 
purpose of continuing my journey up the 
Hudson. All the small places, villages, ham- 
lets, and towns, situated on the banks of the 
river, have, more or less, owing to the great 
facility of communication, risen in a very short 
time to a state of prosperity ; and, with few 
exceptions, appeared flourishing. Among the 
number 1 may mention a few which are between 
West Point and Catskill: Newburgh, Tishkill, 
Poughkeepsie, Kingston, Rhinebeck, &c. Time 
did not permit me to visit them in person ; 
but, from what 1 could judge from the deck of 
the steamer, coupled with the accounts I re- 
ceived from respectable people, I am led to 

VOL. I. F 


conclude that they have to thank the increased 
navigation of the Hudson, and the large mar- 
ket at New York, for their present prosper- 
ous condition. 

It was at Catskill I, for the first time, 
entered an American stage coach. It was 
not unlike the French Diligence, although not 
near so large or heavy. Carriages in the 
United States are generally built very light, 
and the springs are made equally so ; which 
leads you to fear they will break at every mo- 
ment. The stage coaches in the Northern States 
have mostly leather thongs, instead of springs. 
1 often wondered how they could possibly re- 
sist the numberless hard knocks which we 
encountered in passing over a road, in many 
places full of deep holes and broken stones ; 
but the thongs are tough, and proof against 
any shocks. There are three rows of seats 
inside, for three persons on each : on the 
coach-box beside the driver is also room for 
one or two. The middle row is between the 
two doors, of which one is seldom made to 
open. Leather curtains are used on the sides, 
so arranged as to roll up or let down at plea- 
sure. Every thing indicates that they are 
built for the summer season, when a free 
circulation of air is so necessary in a warm 

WOODS. 67 

climate; but, in winter time, our European 
carriages, I must confess, are preferable. The 
tout ensemble has somewhat of an old fashioned 
appearance, particularly to a person coming 
directly from England. 

The distance from Catskill to Pine Orchard, 
an hotel between the mountains, is about 
twelve miles. The road is in some places 
steep, and twists itself from right to left along 
the sides of the mountain through a thick 
wood of various trees, such as cedar, fir, lo- 
cust, white oak, maple, birch, ash, mountain- 
ash, walnut, chesnut, hazle, cherry, wild 
apple, &c. all growing close to each other, as 
if of the same species. The wild vine, twisted 
round the trunks of different trees, appeared 
endeavouring to unite those which in our 
hemisphere grow far asunder, like irrecon- 
cileable enemies. This mixture of trees is a 
peculiarity characteristic of American woods, 
and gives to the landscape a variegated ap- 

About half way from the foot of the moun- 
tain to Pine Orchard, where the road suddenly 
takes another direction, the traveller arrives 
at a kind of amphitheatre, formed of steep 
and woody rocks, the straight side of which 
descends to a precipice, whence a few trees 

F 2 


shoot their crowns ; and, with an extra- 
ordinary temerity, strive to extend their wide 
branches so far, that no eye from above can 
perceive the depth of the precipice. On this 
spot, where a rivulet now rattles between 
bushes and green meadows, Rip Van Winkle 
passed twenty years in sleep ; here it was 
that, awaking from a long fairy slumber, he 
found every thing changed : trees grown up 
where formerly stood only bushes, rivulets 
rattling where formerly was a footpath, 
precipices opening where formerly was a long 
descent. But the worst of all was, he found 
himself changed, stiff* all over his body, 
with a long grey beard and spread hair, and, 
into the bargain, a free citizen of the United 
States instead of an humble subject of 
George III. This occurrence so admirably 
described is now so generally known, that 
1 need only allude to it ; but, if any traveller, 
intending to visit the Catskill Mountains, 
has not read Washington Irving's history 
of Rip Van Winkle,* I recommend him 
by all means to do so. He will then derive 
infinitely more pleasure from his tour, and 
Sleepy Hollow will become so interesting, 

• Vide Sketch Book of Washington Irving, vol. i. 


that it cannot easily be obliterated from his 

The appearance of Pine Orchard Hotel 
(the Mountain House) is that of a palace. It is 
situated on the declivity of a rock, two thou- 
sand two hundred and fourteen feet above 
the level of the river. During the summer 
months, it is much frequented by the first 
families in the neighbourhood, and pic-nic 
parties take place very often by people from 
New York and Albany. But this year many 
were deterred taking up their residence here, 
on account of the cholera, and the difficulty 
of obtaining medical aid, in case of necessity. 
I was nearly alone in this large establish- 

When, on the following morning, I got up, 
and looked around me, it appeared as if I 
was hovering in the air, above the clouds. 
These, as it often happens in elevated situ- 
ations, were lower than the point of the 
mountains on which I stood, and entirely ob- 
scured the country below. This scene recalled 
to my memory the snow-mountains in Switz- 
erland, the different forms of valleys and 
heights in the snow regions, the white moun- 
tain-tops, the reflexion of the sunbeams on 
the masses of snow, contrasting with the dark 


and desolate appearance of the valleys beneath. 
The winds were whistling between the clouds, 
and kept them in constant motion, as when 
the northern breeze stirs up the light snow, 
and forces it to rise in whirls from the earth. 
The sun had at last sufficient power to dissi- 
pate these cloudy landscapes, and gave me an 
opportunity of beholding, not an imaginary 
but a most extensive and enchanting view. 
No sudden change of stage scenery or magic 
metamorphosis has ever produced a similar 
effect upon me as the one I now experienced. 
[ could hardly believe my eyes. I was abso- 
lutely struck with astonishment : every one 
present seemed to feel the same impulse. In 
deep meditation, we all contemplated beau- 
tiful Nature, hardly venturing to raise our 
eyes for fear of destroying the illusion. It 
was too fine to be lost sight of; I dreaded the 
next minute would make it disappear like a 
vapour, as quickly as it had presented itself 
to my view. But it was no enchantment. 
The Hudson was as immoveable as a silver 
streak drawn on green canvass; the mountains, 
hills, forests, fields, and houses, remained the 
same. The whole picture bore a strong re- 
semblance to views in Switzerland, which so 
justly excite the admiration of travellers, 



and are the boast of the inhabitants. A 
dim chain of mountains is seen in the back 
ground, which cuts through Massachusetts, 
Vermont, and Connecticut ; in the fore- 
ground again, nothing but fertile fields 
are observed, intersected with woods and 
green hills, close to neat and comfortable 

At a distance of two miles from the hotel 
are the Cascades : although told in New York 
that these waterfalls are very insignificant, 
and hardly worth seeing, particularly in a 
state in which Niagara is situated, I never- 
theless determined to visit them, conceiving 
there is nothing in nature so fine, so magnifi- 
cent, and majestic, as a cataract. 

A vehicle, something like a Swedish country 
waggon — 

A cursed sort of carriage without springs. 

Which in rough roads leaves scarcely a whole bone— 


brought me across a most abominable road, 
along the banks of two small lakes, to the 
Cascades in question. A stream flows from 
these lakes, which, like a stranger in the 
neighbourhood, unacquainted with footpaths 
and roads, seeks an issue through a maze of 
wood, twisting to the right and left, and 


finally arrives at an unexpected precipice, 
down which it dashes itself almost uncon- 
sciously. The waterfall formed by this 
stream is over a perpendicular rock, one 
hundred and seventy-five feet high. The 
mass of water is precipitated down between 
dark rocks into a pit or basin, where it col- 
lects for a few minutes ; and, with an addi- 
tional quantity, rushes over another rock, 
eig'hty feet high, into a valley so thickly 
wooded, that the water disappears between 
stones and roots of trees the moment it 
reaches the bottom. 

The pit in which the water collects after 
the first fall has a strong resemblance to a 
theatre. The walls, almost perpendicular, 
form a perfect semicircle, cut off in a 
straight line (similar to the fore-scene in a 
theatre, or the row of lamps which divides 
the orchestra from the scene), over which the 
water falls a second time. Imagination may 
also fancy scenery and curtain, for Nature 
has been pleased to represent the whole as a 
coup d'ceil de theatre. The trees, too, are 
grouped together in such an effective man- 
ner, that one would suppose the grand 
Master had copied some forest scene from the 
theatres in Paris or London ; and the moun- 


tains which raise their heads at a distance are 
a true representation of the finest curtain 
that could possibly be painted by a first-rate 

The walls in the pit are, as I have before 
observed, nearly straight, and incline rather 
in an inward direction in nearing the founda- 
tion : there the water moistens and sweeps 
away the soft matter, so that it is possible, as 
under a vault, to walk round the foot of the 
mountain, sheltered by a roof. 

I seated myself for a long while on a small 
rock, and eyed with great attention the mass 
of water, which came thundering down from 
above me, apparently not touching the walls 
of the rocks, but throwing a mist on all the 
objects around. Trees and bushes grew on 
the cliffs that surrounded me ; but my atten- 
tion was particularly directed to an old tree, 
the roots of which were perfectly bare, hang- 
ing almost unsupported along the sides of the 
stones. Nevertheless, it not only had life, but 
appeared to possess full vigour. I was lost in 
conjecture how a tall tree could possibly 
exist, and be able to withstand storms, to 
which it was continually exposed, without 
any solid support, and destitute as it was of 
nearly any earth for its subsistence. Yet, it 


seemed full of life, and now and then bent its 
luxuriant crown, whose leaves playfully 
chatted with the summer breezes. I took a 
great fancy to this tree, and for a long time 
admired its temerity and joyfulness. But a 
strange, singular sound suddenly reached my 
ears, and broke off the link of my medita- 
tions. Unconscious of what I did, I hap- 
pened to look at my guide, who had heard it 
before I did, and who was resting on his wan- 
dering staff, with both eyes and ears attentively 
fixed. I am ignorant whether his attention 
was merely to listen or to excite my curiosity ; 
but he could not be persuaded to utter a 
single word. Another moment, and he still 
remained immoveable — the next he had re- 
tired far from me. Jumping from stone to 
stone, creeping between bushes and roots, he 
sometimes was visible, sometimes out of 
sight. At one time he stopped, then he ad- 
vanced, again he raised himself on his toes, 
and then listened to the incessant rushing. 
At length he reached a rock, round which the 
mysterious tree had loosely thrown its root. 
He seized with one hand the thickest part of 
the root, turned round on the rock, and com- 
menced beating boldly against the trunk of 
the tree. The strokes followed in rapid sue- 


cession ; and leaves, bark, briars, and 
branches, flew in every direction, as when 
the w oodcutter fells with his axe a leafy tree. 

Repeated blows against the trunk, and 
violent shaking', caused, however, the weak 
root — sole support of the tree — to yield. 
It fell suddenly with a dreadful crash into the 
water, and followed it down the second fall. 
It has since been condemned, probably, for 
some years, to lie with the crown towards 
the earth, at the foot of a venerable oak, 
boasting of its age and rank. The water, 
arrested in its progress by the fallen hero, 
foams with rage, and covers its body conti- 
nually with froth. 

I visited this place some time afterwards ; 
the tree remained on the same spot. The 
leaves had disappeared, and green turfs were 
growing here and there on the bark, but the 
trunk seemed still fresh. A few frogs had 
taken up their abode underneath, and were 
then in serious deliberation about the affairs 
of their kingdom. 

As soon as the tree had quitted the rocky 
spot on which it had spent its youth, I could 
clearly see something glittering and moving 
in the nearest bushes. My daring guide did 
not discontinue his blows till the rattlesnake 


(for SO it turned out to be,) had ceased to live. 
Triumphantly he seized the venomous animal, 
threw it down before me, and exclaimed, 
" Look what a fellow I have caught!" 

The animal was one of those dangerous 
snakes which, during the summer months, are 
so full of venom, that they become blind with 
it. I had often, since my arrival in Ame- 
rica, heard of the bewitching power these 
animals possess, of which many people seem 
thoroughly convinced, and which has pro- 
bably obtained credence with the first colo- 
nists in very remote times. My guide was 
one of those who entertained no doubt on the 
subject. I availed myself of the opportunity 
to put a few questions, and gave him to 
understand I doubted the truth of it. He 
could not forbear relating to me the follow- 
ing narrative, well known in the Northern 
States : 

'* Among the first colonists in the vicinity 
of the green mountains in Vermont, there was 
a man who, prepossessed in favour of the ferti- 
lity of the country, took up his residence there 
with his young and handsome wife. They lived 
in that part about a year, and all difficulties 
incidental to new settlers had nearly been 
removed. They now began to enjoy them- 

THE guide's story. 77 

selves, and found their abode tolerable. The 
Indians were no more dreaded; the wild ani- 
mals in the forests were kept aloof by the 
never-failing gun of man. The only danger 
to which they were exposed was that of being- 
stung by rattlesnakes, of which there were 
great numbers. Several persons had had the 
misfortune to be stung, and expired in the 
most dreadful agony. 

*' One day, the husband, accompanied by 
his wife, went into the woods to hunt. The 
weather was fine — the sun almost scorched 
their heads. The young wife, after wander- 
ing some time among bushes and stones, at 
length became tired, and sat down to rest 
herself on the branch of a tree, in expectation 
of the return of her husband. He followed 
in the meanwhile the traces of a deer, climb- 
ing from rock to rock, with a view to enter a 
green plain at the foot of a mountain. All at 
once he observed, lying before him, a rattle- 
snake of uncommon size. Surprised at the 
sight, he stopped, and attentively considered 
the dangerous animal, which, only a few 
paces from him, seemed to deliberate whether 
it should venture to take a leap down the 
precipice. It suddenly formed a plan, bent 
its long body, and, as if imploring mercy. 

78 THE guide's story. 

fixed upon the husband a pair of eyes which, 
far from expressing hatred towards mankind, 
spoke only the accents of mildness and friend- 
ship. There was something so extraordinary 
and so touching in the movements of the 
animal, that the husband remained silent and 
motionless on the spot. The snake displayed 
the finest colours, which the burning sun 
changed, as it approached, from green to 
purple and gold. Imperceptibly it rolled on- 
wards ; a strange music was heard, not 
unlike the melting tones of the honey-bird, 
and the animal disappeared, without his per- 
ceiving what direction it took. He thought 
at first he was in the midst of a world of mys- 
terious colours, which cleared up, darkened, 
and again revived with a magic light. Har- 
mony continued to enchant his ears. Perspira- 
tion covered his brow ; his frame shook, as if 
attacked by ague ; his legs refused their 
office. * Is it a dream ?' exclaimed he ; ' what 
retains me at this place ?' He made an effort 
to get away, but his feet were almost be- 
numbed, and he felt as if fastened to the 
rock. The unfortunate man was bewitched. 
" Another sound reached his ears ; it was 
the voice of man, dismal and plaintive. 
Twice he heard it, but could not move. A 


white female eagerly seized his arm, and her 
breath roused him at once from the dream 
of enchantment. Music and colours disap- 
peared at once. Round his feet twined the 
rattlesnake, with fiery eyes and extended 
sting. His frightened wife clung to his 
breast. Within a second they were attacked 
by the snake. The woman was the first 
victim. The venom spread with the rapidity 
of thought, and her lamentations soon in- 
formed the unhappy husband of the dreadful 
scene that awaited him. 

" Half crazy, he rushed forward, and 
trampled under his feet the snake, which now 
endeavoured to steal away. Vengeance was 
not satisfied till the animal was crushed, and 
torn piecemeal against the sharp and pointed 

" The sufferings of the expiring wife called 
him to her side. Terrified, he examined the 
blueish black wound, which every minute 
grew darker and darker. They were far 
from home or from any human habitation ; 
still they wandered for a while, hand in 
hand, till excruciating pains stretched the 
female senseless on the ground. Although 
greatly exhausted, the husband took her in 
his arms, carried her to a neighbouring 


rivulet, and refreshed her by means of cool 
water. She recovered a little, but had no 
strength to raise her head, which rested 
motionless on his breast. Hours passed in 
this way, and no human being appeared to 
assist the unhappy couple. Solitary, in an 
endless forest, he watched the progress of 
death, joined his prayers to hers, and saw her 

These last words my guide expressed with 
so much emotion, that I clearly perceived he 
was deeply affected by the tragic narrative. 
My curiosity was in the mean time excited to 
know the fate of the husband, and the particu- 
lars of his after life. My guide gave me the 
following account : 

'' From that moment the unhappy widower 
thought of nothing but revenge, and made 
the most sacred vow to consecrate the 
remainder of his life to the extermination of 
that curse of man, the rattlesnake. This oath 
he strictly observed till his death, and thou- 
sands of snakes fell continually under his vin- 
dictive blows. For this reason he was gene- 
rally known under the name of the Rattle- 
snake Hunter. Not many years ago, I saw 
the old grey-haired man ; and never shall I 
forget the tears he shed at the recollection 


of his young consort, and his solemn and 
piercing look in expressing these words — 
* Yes, by G— d ! these bewitching d— Is shall 
soon cease to plague the earth ! Do not be- 
lieve that these animals are only snakes — 
creeping snakes : they are servants of fallen 
angels — the immediate agents and spirits of 
Hell.' " 

Here my guide ended his narrative. We 
returned to Pine Orchard in deep silence. 
The tale of the unfortunate snake-hunter 
remained a long while impressed on my mind ; 
and when subsequently, in the Southern 
States, I had frequent occasions of seeing 
snakes of different kinds, I always remem- 
bered this anecdote. 

From Catskill Mountains I proceeded to a 
small village, five miles up the river, to which 
the classical name of Athens has been given. 
It was the first place I arrived at in America, 
bearing an old European name. This, how- 
ever, is very customary: in my subsequent 
travels in the country, I found several places 
called Sparta, Rome, Utica, Syracuse, &c. 
These names have been adopted without any 
attention being paid as to whether the situa- 
tion of the village or hamlet bore any resem- 
blance to the old city after which it was 

VOL. I. G 


baptized : whim or chance have determined 
the appellation. 

American Athens, for example, is situated 
on a plain, without a single hill, and on the 
banks of a river; whereas ancient Athens 
was surrounded by eminences. At first, it 
appeared singular to me to see a place, 
which, since my youth, I had pictured to my- 
self filled with venerable relics, and ruins of 
temples and palaces, only consist of a few 
wooden houses of modern architecture, un- 
paved streets, showing no other ruins but 
those of abandoned blacksmiths' shops, or 
the walls of houses destroyed by fire. It was 
also a peculiar feature in Athens to behold 
hogs and other quadrupeds occupy the tho- 
roughfares and squares, instead of having 
the ears delighted with speeches from elo- 
quent orators. 

From hence I crossed the river to Hudson, 
a small hamlet on the opposite side, and 
continued my journey to Lebanon Springs, 
in company with one of the most amiable 
American families I ever met with, and the 
recollection of which will follow me through 


« I joined myself to the people. It is now thirty years since, 
I believe, and," added she, raising her hands and eyes, and speaking 
with more energy than she had yet spoken, '^ I say the truth before 
God, and lie not: I have not repented for a moment — I have been 
heartily thankful that I have borne my testimony. I have pur- 
chased a peace that cannot be taken away, and cheaply purchased 

Miss Sedgewick. 

These Springs are among the most fashion- 
able in the Northern States ; in the summer 
season they are filled with the first and best 
company. They are situated on the declivity 
of a mountain, from whence, for miles round, 
Nature appears in her finest mantle. The 
water is lukewarm and perfectly harmless. 
The greatest part of individuals visiting this 
place do it less from a desire to taste the 
waters than to see and acquire a knowledge 
of the remarkable religious sect, whose 
head-quarters are in this vicinity, and the 
members of which are called Shakers. 

G 2 


Several branches of this sect are spread 
over various parts of America ; but the prin- 
cipal place — the central union — is at a vil- 
lage about two miles from the Springs, ex- 
clusively inhabited by Shakers, and built by 
them. Every stranger, visiting it for the 
first time, cannot help remarking the peculiar 
cleanliness and neatness everywhere prevail- 
ing. On both sides of a wide street are 
houses two or three stories high. One row is 
built at the foot of a mountain, which shelters 
it against the north-easterly winds, and fur- 
nishes, besides, to the inhabitants sufficiency 
of water to carry on saw-mills, flour-mills, 
and workshops of various descriptions. The 
other row, again, is surrounded by gardens, 
abounding in every kind of vegetables ; and 
extensive meadows are seen at a distance, 
w^here the finest cattle are fed on the most 
luxuriant herbs. On this side of the street, 
also, is the meeting-house, erected in the year 
1825, by zealous members. It is of wood, 
eighty feet long, and sixty-five wide, with a 
vaulted roof, covered with tin plates. The 
interior and exterior is painted white. The 
inside is destitute of ornaments — no pillars, 
no painted windows, no tasteful pulpit. The 
floor is the only part with which they seem to 

ANN LEE. 85 

have taken any pains. It is of American 
fir, of a brown colour, and so shining and 
clean, that one is almost unwilling to walk 
upon it. The whole appearance of this 
church bears the stamp of simplicity and 

The United Society of Shakers had its 
origin in England. The first founder was a 
female of the name of Ann Lee, born at Man- 
chester, in the year 1736. Her father was a 
poor blacksmith, who could not afford to give 
his eight children any education. 

Ann commenced her career in a cotton- 
factory : afterwards she engaged with a 
hatter; then as a cook in an hospital; and 
finally married, at the age of eighteen, a 
smith of the name of Stanley, who treated her 
in the most cruel and barbarous manner. 
This produced a depression of spirits, and she 
was observed invariably seeking solitude. 

From a hypochondriac she soon became a 
religious fanatic. She ardently sought and 
got admission into a Quaker company. 
Here her fanatical ravings gained additional 
strength, and she began at length to preach 
and proclaim her own creed about the year 
1770. She pretended to be the second Christ, 
sent on earth to make revelations ; and 

86 ANN LEE. 

added that the kingdom of a thousand 
years was at hand, and that she was im- 
mortal. Many believed her, and thought she 
actually was what she represented herself to 
be. From that time she was called Mother, 
and was subsequently worshipped as the 
Redeemer. One of their hymns establishes 
this point : 

Glory give unto the Sou, 

For he has redemption won ; 

Glory unto Mother give. 

For the Saints through her do live. 

I heard one of her adherents declare: 
** Mother Ann Lee was the temple of the 
Holy Ghost. We know she was Christ in his 
second revelation on earth, and that Her 
gospel has saved us from perdition." 
In one of their hymns they again say : 

I do believe that God and Christ his Son, 
Tlie Holy Ghost, and Mother joined in one, 
Will soon complete the work which they began. 
And will redeem the fallen race of man. 

This is a kind of confession, showing pretty 
clearly that they make Divinity consist of 
four persons, and that Ann Lee is one of 

The cruel treatment she experienced from 
her husband induced her to relinquish all 

ANN LEE. 87 

idea of matrimony, and to propagate the 
doctrine that it was only the work of Satan. 
She endeavoured to prove this by asserting- 
that the Redeemer was never married, nor 
the Apostles; and that neither he nor any 
of them ever urged a state of marriage. 
She further advanced, that as Jesus Christ 
was a second Adam, so she was the second 
Eve, and that she had come on earth to 
restore the female part of mankind to that 
celestial purity and innocence which distin- 
guished our first mother before her fall. 
This induced her to introduce in the wor- 
ship of the new sect a ceremony which has 
been so much and so justly censured, that of 
dancing without any garments. She sup- 
ported her command in this respect by a quo- 
tation from the Bible, Genesis ii. 25, and was 
perfectly convinced that man could not be 
innocent, and free from crime, without follow- 
ing, in every thing, the example of our forefa- 
thers before their fall. 

The following verses from a hymn, bearing 
the title, " Restoration,'' show that the sect 
to this very day believe in the truth of it : 

How great is the myst'ry which God has made known ! 
He's come in the Daughter as well as the Son ; 
Now Satan's dark works he wih fully defeat. 
And final redemption will soon be complete. 

88 ANN LEE. 

The first Eve was tempted, and led into sin ; 
The second, more faithful, has led out again ; 
With a firm resolution (her word was a sword) 
She fought her way through, and creation restored. 

A full restoration has now taken place, 

For all who believe of the first Adam's race ; 

The male and the female made free from the curse. 

And Adam's probation is brought down to us. 

Another of her commands was, that the 
members should confess their sins, at least 
once a week, to some of the Elders, who 
made a report of these confessions to her. 
By this politic measure, she obtained a 
despotic rule over the Society, and could 
imperceptibly do what she pleased with her 
enthusiastic followers. They were not only 
commanded to reveal their own sins and 
thoughts, but to state what they knew of 
the other brethren and sisters — everything* 
that passed between them, conversations, &c. 

In this manner she acquired a perfect 
knowledge of every circumstance, and took 
an opportunity of reproving them, long before 
they had been confessed, for acts which they 
endeavoured to conceal. It was therefore 
natural that ignorant people, witnessing what 
appeared to be her omniscience, would believe 
that God revealed to her every thing that 
was to happen on earth. 


Among- the many singular ceremonies in 
their worship, the observance of which she 
insisted upon, those of dancing, clapping- 
hands, jumping, stamping, shaking, jogging, 
and crying, were particularly remarkable. 
" God has commanded it," exclaimed she ; 
and the audience, composed of persons of the 
lowest order, without any instruction, passed 
from belief to blind enthusiasm, and from 
that almost to madness. 

The idea that they were the only men 
who worshipped the Creator as he ought to 
be, and that he loved them like a father, 
made them frantic victims of fanaticism. 
They never ceased to dance and jump (which, 
according to their ideas, is absolutely neces- 
sary to subdue the body and expel all sensual 
appetites) till, completely fatigued, they fall 
down, like Turkish Dervishes. The world, in 
their eyes, has lost all charm, and no joy or 
consolation remains for them, except in the 
certainty that the kingdom of a thousand 
years is near at hand, and that the purity 
and innocence of Paradise awaits them. 
They often fancy themselves inspired ; and 
many pretend to give a description of God 
Almighty, seated on his throne — of the dress 
of Lucifer, &c. 


It was in the company of such followers that 
Ann Lee embarked, in the year 1774, for 
America. She told them that a divine reve- 
lation enjoined her to proceed thither ; but 
in reality it was to elude the persecutions 
to which the sect was continually exposed 
in England. 

The following- miracle is stated to have 
occurred during the voyage — let who will 
believe it ! The ship sprung a leak during 
a heavy storm. The water rushed in so 
quickly and in so great an abundance, that, 
although all pumps were going, the vessel soon 
filled. The captain declared that there was 
no hope of salvation, and that all the passen- 
gers would, in the course of a few hours, 
inevitably perish. But Ann assured him this 
should not happen. She added, with a deter- 
mined accent, " We shall all arrive in safety 
in America. I saw just now two angels near 
the main-mast ; they showed me the coast of 
the New World." 

She encouraged the sailors, and begged 
them to persevere: she even assisted in 
working the pumps. A few minutes after- 
wards the ship was struck by a heavy sea, 
and behold ! the loosened plank was re- 
placed ! 


On arriving- in America, they first settled 
in a small town called Waterobet, but removed 
their head-quarters, in the year 1788, to New 
Lebanon, their present residence, where I vi- 
sited them. The Holy Mother had, in the 
mean while, contrary to the expectation of 
every one, departed this life in the year 1784, 
although, in the whole course of her existence, 
she never ceased to preach about her immor- 
tality. If any Shaker is asked how this hap- 
pened, he will answer : " She meant in a spi- 
ritual sense not to die." 

Notwithstanding this reply, I continued 
insinuating my doubts : an elderly member 
of the sect heard this, and appeared rather 
displeased : he angrily asked, " If Ann Lee 
had not been inspired, would she have pro- 
claimed to the world a doctrine, apparently 
so unnatural, as that of celibacy?" 

After her demise, the Pontificate devolved 
on J. Whitaker, her confidant, who died two 
years afterwards, in the year 1786. He was 
succeeded by Joseph Meacham, a man who 
had sense enough to see that many ceremo- 
nies of the sect were useless, and that a reform 
was absolutely necessary. He, very properly, 
waved the hope of a celestial innocence on 
earth, and undertook seriously to alter the 


rules and rites of the Society. The El}/sian 
dance, and some other ridiculous and even 
indecent customs, were abolished: his regu- 
lations are strictly observed to this very day. 
He died in 1796, and was succeeded by Lucy 
Wright, who governed the sect till 1821, 
when she also expired ; and the direction was 
given to Ebenezar Bishop, who is still alive. 
This individual is not destitute of talents, but 
rather illiterate and uncivilized. His exterior 
is pleasing, and inspires respect among the 

The creed of this remarkable religious sect, 
such as professed at this time, was stated to 
me as follows : 

Christ has discovered himself a second time on earth in the person 
of Ann Lee. 

God is only with them, and there is no spiritual salvation without 

The day of judgment is now. God judges the world through his 
daughter Ann Lee. 

Those who marry do not know Christ, and do not belong to his 

Without confessing, none can be blessed. 

Every one must submit to purgatory after death ; and all those 
who have died after Mother Ann must, in the first instance, listen 
to a discourse delivered by her in the world of spirits, before they 
are permitted to leave the purifying fire. 

Numerous rules and regulations are pre- 
scribed to them, all supposed to have ema- 
nated direct from God. None are given in 


writing', *' for" — the Shakers observe — ** leave 
every thing to memory — this great gift of 
God." I will here mention a few of the most 
striking : 

No man is permitted to live with a female, or to be in the same 
room with her, without the attendance of a third person. 

Brothers and sisters cannot visit each other in their respective 
rooms after the evening prayer is over, nor whilst they are occupied 
in making beds. 

No brother is allowed to meet a sister on the staircase, or enter 
her room without first knocking, and vice versa. 

No sister can go alone to the store of a brother, nor can brothers 
or sisters take each other by the hand, or touch each others' clothes, 
or milk cows at the same time. 

No person is allowed to shake another by the hand who does not 
belong to the Society, or discover any thing relative to it. 

It is not permitted to say that he or she lies, or use epithets, or 
quarrel among each other. 

It is not permitted to write or receive letters without the consent 
of the Elders, or to read any thing without their sanction. 

It is not permitted to borrow money from any person, or to ha\e 
private money transactions. 

It is not permitted to be absent from divine service, nor to attend 
it without having previously been confessed. 

It is not permitted to read newspapers or any worldly books on a 
Sunday; neither must the members cut hair or nails, wash feet, 
clean boots, or shave, on the Sabbath day. 

It is not permitted to attend church in boots, or snap the right 
thumb over the left, while praying. 

It is not permitted to kneel down on the left knee first, or have 
the pockethandkerchief in the hand, while praying. 

It is not permitted to use watches, umbrellas, and spurs, or hats 
of any other shape than the usual one, or right and left shoes. 

It is not permitted to play with dogs and cats, or to kick or ill-use 
any animal, &c. 

Each of their villages is divided into lots, 
and each lot is occupied by a family. When- 


ever a person is admitted into the sect, he 
becomes a member of one of these families, 
lives in the same house, boards at their table, 
and is clothed from the same store. The fe- 
males are the whole day occupied, partly with 
work necessary for the common good, such as 
knitting stockings, making clothes, washing, 
weaving, baking, preparing food, &c. partly 
in manufacturing articles, which are after- 
wards disposed of for the benefit of the com- 
munity. The men again are employed in 
the cultivation of fields, in cutting wood, 
attending to gardening, or pursuing different 

When I saw these people, working hard 
from morning to night, some even beyond their 
strength, and obliged sometimes to follow it 
up on Sundays, and all this not for their own 
individual benefit, but merely with a view to 
increase the common stock, I could not help 
comparing them to culprits confined in a house 
of correction, and condemned to hard labour 
for the sake of improving their morals. All 
those with whom I conversed seemed, never- 
theless, perfect enthusiasts, and attended to 
their business with apparent satisfaction, 
bearing, 1 must add, a strong resemblance to 
real pleasure. 


But, if we admit that many of them, from 
weariness of the world, from ignorance of a 
better and happier life, from motives of re- 
pentance only for past trespasses, fulfil their 
severe task with cheerfulness and without 
repining — if we admit, I say, that many are 
contented with their situation, w^hat is the 
cause that so many pale faces, so many sunken 
eyes, so many parched lips, are invariably 
seen among them ? What is the cause that 
they become old men and women, before they 
arrive at the age of manhood? What is the 
cause that, out of about one hundred women 
I had an opportunity of seeing, not one was 
even passable in point of appearance ? And 
yet some were pointed out to me, whose age 
was not twenty-four, and who ought at least to 
have exhibited some indications of freshness. 
What is the cause that girls, known to have 
been handsome and agreeable at the period 
of their admission into the Society, after a 
short time become pale, ugly, and melancholy, 
resembling spectres more than living beings ? 
I can only pity the unhappy and deluded 
objects of an erroneous and fanatical doc- 

But, if travellers are disgusted with the 
principles of this absurd creed and its cere- 


monies, none, without departing from justice, 
can deny them a certain portion of admiration 
for the order, industry, economy, prudence, 
and frugality, so peculiar to their sect. Every 
description of goods manufactured by them is 
of the very best quality. Their cattle are far 
superior to those of their neighbours, and can 
only be compared to that fine breed so often 
seen in Switzerland. The schools also, par- 
ticularly those for the girls, have been care- 
fully attended to. Marriages being contrary 
to their tenets, in order to preserve and uphold 
the sect, they are obliged to admit orphans, 
or poor children, handed over by destitute 
parents. These children are instructed in 
reading, writing, grammar, arithmetic, and a 
superficial knowledge of geography and astro- 
nomy. By the observance of a severe disci- 
pline, to which they are immediately subjected, 
they acquire a certain degree of seriousness 
in walk and look, which, according to our 
worldly notions of things, does not harmonize 
with the vivacity of a child, whose disposition 
is generally lively and active. A genius, ex- 
cept in the mechanical art, is seldom found in 
any youth brought up under their care ; and, 
if any one should happen to show an inclina- 
tion to study more than another, he generally 


leaves the sect as soon as he arrives at the age 
of maturity. 

The Shakers have often been suspected of 
attempts to seduce rich people to become 
members of their sect, merely with avievv to get 
possession of their property; which is always 
vested in the general fund on entering the soci- 
ety, and never redeemable if the party should 
wish to retire. This accusation would, if proved, 
be an ineffaceable stain on their reputation ; 
but I have no reason to think it is the case : 
I am on the contrary persuaded that this 
peaceable people are incapable of such base- 
ness, and, therefore, unless the statement be 
clearly established, it must be considered a ca- 
lumny. The common fund is administered by 
a few select brethren and sisters, who account 
for every thing in a regular way. Those who 
quit the sect can lay no claim to any part of 
this fund ; those again who remain have the 
satisfaction to know that the capital is always 
accumulating, and that they are sure of being 
provided for to the end of their existence. 

The dress of the men consists of long old- 
fashioned brown coats, with pockets in the 
sides, blue or brown small-clothes, shoes 
or short boots, white cravats, tied close round 
the neck, with collars turned down, and the 

VOL. I. « 

98 THE shakers' meeting. 

hair hanging loose down the back. The fe- 
males, on working days, are dressed like 
German peasant women ; but on Sundays 
they are attired in short-waisted white dresses 
with tight sleeves, white neckhandkerchief, 
and a thin, white, transparent bonnet ; the 
hair is turned up under the cap, so that none 
of it is seen ; the stockings are white, the 
shoes have high heels, and a white pocket- 
handkerchief with a black border hangs on 
the arm. Their hats are of an oval form, 
white, yellow, or grey. Those of the men 
are large and broad-brimmed, like the usual 
Quaker hats. 

Divine service, or what is called " meeting"," 
was just going to begin. The brethren had 
entered through one door, and the sisters 
through another, all in a row, in regular mi- 
litary order. Several strangers were beside 
me outside the church, curious and anxious 
to be admitted. One of the Elders opened at 
length the door through which the men had 
passed: the whole crowd rushed in at the 
same time with anxious eyes. The places 
given to us were on the same side with the 
principal entrances, and opposite was the 
whole congregation seated, consisting of 
nearly two hundred and fifty persons of both 

THE shakers' meeting. 99 

sexes, separated, but facing each other, and 
turning- their sides to the strangers. On sur- 
veying all these white-dressed female spectres, 
which, mummy-like, remained immoveable and 
close to each other, it struck me as if I had en- 
tered a vaulted tomb. The first impression was 
indeed solemn : why was this so soon to vanish 
wdien service commenced? At a given signal 
they all rose from their seats, and placed them- 
selves in the form of a sugarloaf, the Elders at 
their head, and the men and women remaining 
separated the whole time. They began singing 
several psalms and hymns, the melody of 
which was the most uniform I ever heard. 
Every one exerted himself to the utmost of 
his lungs, so that I even entertained some 
apprehension for the tympanum of my ears. 
To understand a single word of what they 
said, I found at once impossible; but one 
of my companions pretended afterwards that 
he heard them say : " Blessed Mother, Divine 
Mother Ann!" The music, however, did not 
appear deafening to the singers. They seemed 
pleased with it, hardly ever looked up, and 
accompanied the melody with a continual 
stamping of their feet. At the end of every 
psalm, they opened their closed hands, and 
let them fall by their sides; after which 

H 2 

100 THE shakers' meeting. 

those brethren and sisters who felt inspired 
delivered a short discourse extempore, which, 
to my g^reat surprise, was addressed to the 
strangers present. At the conclusion, the 
whole being merely phrases without meaning, 
and repeated with many pauses, singing was 
resumed. When three psalms had been gone 
through, the members changed their position 
by turning their backs to the spectators. 
They were then placed in rows, the men on 
one side, the women on the other, with their 
faces towards the Elders, who stood along the 
opposite wall near the strangers. All the men 
had, in the meanwhile, taken off their coats, 
and stood in their shirt sleeves ; the women 
laid aside their pocket-handkerchiefs, to be 
ready for the ceremony. In the midst of a 
shrill and singular cry, they now began to 
dance, advancing three paces and retreating 
one, and continued in this way for a long while, 
now and then turning round on their heels. 
Many appeared to labour so hard that per- 
spiration ran down their cheeks in great profu- 
sion ; they pretend in this way to subdue carnal 
appetites, and to express their joy at the 
victory gained over the power of lust. The 
noise attending this ceremony they defend by 
quotations from the Bible, of which I happen 

THE shakers' meeting. 101 

to recollect one : Isaiah xii, vi. " Cry out and 
shout, thou inhabitant of Zion : for great is 
the Holy One of Israel in the midst of thee." 

As soon as this unpleasant music was over, 
they commenced jogging round the room : the 
men first, three abreast, and the women after- 
wards, in the same manner. This jogging is 
neither walking nor running ; they take their 
steps in regular time, and move about with 
crooked knees. During this operation, they 
stretch out and wave their hands incessantly, 
not unlike the motion of a dog splashing with 
his fore-feet when thrown into water. A few 
members of both sexes stopped in the centre 
of the room, singing some very discordant 
hymns, the others jogged round them, accom- 
panying the song. At the end of each hymn, 
a few admonishing words to the strangers 
were generally uttered by one of the party, 
as he happened to be inspired, after which 
the dancing continued for some time, with 
the only exception that they formed at last 
two rings, one inside the other, and each 
going round in an opposite direction to the 

I was anxious to know what might be 
meant by this circular dance, and inquired 
of one of them on the following day. " This 


circle," answered he, " means sin on earth, 
and our evolutions round it show our abhor- 
rence, as well as the powerful effect of the 
Holy Ghost on us." A foreigner, who, 
like myself, visited this place for the second 
time, to acquire a more perfect knowledge 
of the principles of the sect, happened to hear 
this reply, and observed, in a nearly audible 
tone, " I pity them. They give themselves 
a great deal of unnecessary trouble, and sub- 
mit to an infinity of privations for the sake of 
a few absurd and ridiculous maxims." The 
holy brother heard this remark. *' We know 
very well," retorted he, whilst lowering his 
sharp brown eyes, " that conformity to these 
principles requires a large portion of self- 
denial. But, in truth, if we believe in the 
assertion of our Redeemer, this does not 
amount to a positive proof that they are not 
the true principles of the Christian faith. Ap- 
proved or disapproved by the world, pleasing 
or disagreeable to the weak part of mankind, 
none can reasonably complain, or oppose them, 
when every one is at liberty to follow them 
or not." Neither of us made any remark to 
this observation ; the individual retired ap- 
parently satisfied, conceiving doubtless that 
he had triumphed, by irresistible arguments, 

SERMON. 103 

over two worldly, and in his eyes lost, 

But I must return to the service. Dancing 
was now over, and the brothers and sisters 
resumed their former places. One of the 
Elders advanced between the rows, and deli- 
vered a kind of sermon, exclusively directed, 
as before, to the strangers, in which he en- 
deavoured to explain and justify the singular 
ceremony observed upon the occasion. The 
sermon was extremely dry, and without any 
pretence to sense. Every one of the auditors 
complained of its length, and seemed exces- 
sively delighted when the orator resumed his 
place. Psalms and hymns concluded the 
whole ; and one of the members, in a loud 
voice, informed the congregation that the ser- 
vice was over. The men very silently put on 
their hats and coats, the women their bonnets, 
and all departed through different doors, as 
they had arrived, in perfect military order. 

Before I take leave of the Shakers — these 
peaceable, industrious, and unhappy religious 
victims — I will relate an anecdote, which I 
heard from a person in the neighbourhood of 
New Lebanon, relative to them : 

'• A few years ago," said he, *' the Shakers 
signified an intention of celebrating the de- 


barkatioii of Mother Ann Lee on the Ame- 
rican shore. It was determined that the 
ceremony should be observed by a profuse 
and general tobacco-smoking* fete. A " bull," 
or edict, was issued, directed to the scattered 
members of the Society in every part of 
America, enjoining them to assemble on a 
certain day in the month of August, for this 
important purpose. 

" I did not neglect to attend upon this 
solemn occasion. When I entered the church, 
I found that the order and regularity, which 
had hitherto distinguished the sisters, were en- 
tirely gone. Their natural and unpretending- 
manners — their attention to discipline — all 
had vanished ; in its place, I discovered an 
unusual degree of negligence in their walk, 
a wildness in their looks, a strange confusion 
altogether, which unquestionably surprised 
me at first, but which I endeavoured to 
explain by the extraordinary sublimity of the 

" All sat down in deep silence. Ebenezar 
Bishop occupied the principal seat, and 
uttered a few half-broken sentences in allu- 
sion to the divine solemnity now^ to be per- 
formed, which, according to his notions, was 
ordained by God. He then turned to one of 


the younger sisters, and ordered her to pro- 
cure fire, which she did. He lighted his pipe, 
drew a long puff, and afterwards slowly blevv 
out what he called the first victim of the day. 
In a dignified manner he withdrew the pipe 
from his mouth, raised his eyes towards 
heaven, and said, ' Brethren and sisters, 

** All now lighted their respective pipes, 
and, like novices in the art of smoking, lost 
no time in blowing out the smoke, which in 
the course of ten minutes so completely 
obscured the room that no object could be 
distinguished. The Elders looked upon these 
clouds of smoke, which surrounded their 
heads, with religious awe. 

" The ceremony was ordered to last one 
hour. A quarter of that time had hardly 
elapsed, before a number of smoking indivi- 
duals found the atmosphere altogether into- 
lerable. Several, particularly the young 
women, who had hitherto looked to the Elders 
for protection, now directed their looks to- 
wards the door, with faces as pale as death. 
E\pry one was more or less unwell ; and 
never did I witness so strong a desire to 
depart. But only when the clock announced 
the termination of the hour was the meeting 


dissolved ; and, believe me, no one was behind- 
hand in effeetino- a retreat for the purpose of 
breathing' fresh air." 

Would any one think such fanatical scenes 
possible in the nineteenth century — in en- 
lightened times like ours ? The religious 
toleration generally observed in the United 
States prevents government from putting an 
end to a sect whose creed is as unreasonable 
as its ceremonies are ridiculous ; and, as long- 
as the Shakers continue peaceable, and 
abstain from violation of the laws, no Ame- 
rican President can compel them to discon- 
tinue dancing, or reject their belief in Mother 
Ann's equal divinity with that of the Re- 

This liberty of conscience, every where pre- 
valent in North America, and on which I will 
touch more hereafter, gives rise naturally to a 
number of sects, many of which are as extra- 
ordinary as the one just mentioned. In the 
year 1832, for instance, a man in New York 
assumed the garb of a Jew, and preached 
that he was nothing less than the Messiah 
himself. A great many persons flocked to 
the room where he delivered his discourses, 
curious to see and hear this modern prophet ; 
and all returned perfectly disgusteil with the 


individual and his doctrines. As long* as his 
sermons had a peaceable tendency, he was 
left undisturbed ; but at length his follies and 
absurdities went beyond the limits of endu- 
rance, and he was not permitted to continue 
his ravings. The end of his prophetical 
career was — a residence in a madhouse. 


Glens which might have made even exile dear. 


From Lebanon I directed my course through 
the heart of the flourishing state of Mas- 
sachusetts. My first day's journey termi- 
nated at Northampton, a distance of about 
fifty miles, which it took nearly twelve hours 
to complete. The roads were certainly very 
rough ; in some places so bad, that tra- 
vellers ran a risk of coming in collision with 
each other's heads, and breaking their limbs ; 
but, upon the whole, they may be called 
tolerable, particularly when compared to the 
roads in the Southern and Western States. 

Our slow progress was not to be attributed 
either to the badness of the roads, or to the 
horses, which had an appearance of strength, 
but entirely to the drivers. They were 


changed several times in the course of the 
day ; but, to the regret of all present, little 
was gained by the alteration. One, in parti- 
cular, was excessively slow in his motions, 
and rather abusive. I do not know if I was 
the unfortunate cause of it ; my companions 
pretended I was, for having inadvertently — 
and certainly without intending, or even sup- 
posing, it would give offence — addressed 
him by the disreputable title of " Coachman," 
always used in England, and which 1 thought 
was also applicable here. Enough ; I dis- 
continued the word from that hour as long as 
I remained in America ; and never forgot, 
upon subsequent occasions, to call repub- 
lican coachmen " drivers." 

The part of the country 1 now traversed 
was very rich and fertile. Wheat, rye, and 
Indian corn, were growing abundantly in 
every direction. Fields, intermixed with 
sand, were seen here and there ; and in these 
places the crop appeared rather indifferent. 
Large tracts of land, particularly in the neigh- 
bourhood of Northampton, lay waste and 
uncultivated, although some are considered 
good. This 1 can only explain by supposing 
that the farmers are either satisfied with what 
they already possess, or that they cannot 


extend their agricultural pursuits for want 
of sufficient hands. They are, however, all 
in easy circumstances. 

The eastern part of Massachusetts cannot 
boast of so many substantial farmers as the 
western ; the soil is not near so rich ; and 
many of the natives are, therefore, obliged 
to abandon farming", and take to manu- 

The country presents, upon the whole, a 
very variegated aspect. Hills and moun- 
tains succeed dales, woods, and fields. The 
former delight the traveller with the finest 
prospects. From the top of a mountain not 
far from Lebanon, the beautiful foliage of the 
trees, grouped together in the midst of luxu- 
riant fields, formed a rich picture. 

The country houses are generally two 
stories high ; the walls are built differently 
from those in Sweden ; the planks are laid 
on the top of each other along the ground, 
and not raised vertically, as with us. 
They are mostly painted white, with green 
blinds fixed outside, giving them an appear- 
ance of cleanliness and neatness seldom wit- 
nessed in Europe. The interior arrange- 
ments, if not costly, are invariably tasteful. 
I often saw houses of farmers so comfortably 


fitted up, that they might be taken for the 
residence of a Governor of the State. Gar- 
dens, filled with every description of vegeta- 
bles and fruit-trees, particularly apple-trees, 
are every where seen ; and, with a view to 
make these habitations still more agreeable 
and cool, trees are planted all around, the 
leafy branches of which afford ample shade 
to the inmates. The rearing of cattle is also 
particularly attended to. Cows and oxen are 
of the very best breed ; their immense size 
and strength often recalled to my mind those 
seen in enchanting Switzerland. 

A European, travelling in this direction, 
cannot help admiring the general appearance 
of comfort and prosperity so singularly strik- 
ing. To an inhabitant of the Scandinavian 
Peninsula, accustomed to different scenes, it 
is peculiarly gratifying to witness, instead of 
gorgeous palaces by the side of poor huts, a 
row of neat country houses, inhabited by 
independent farmers. 

A Swedish servant, lately arrived in Ame- 
rica, on looking round and perceiving the 
happy state so generally diffused, exclaimed, 
with surprise and characteristic simplicity, 
" Sir, have the goodness to inform me where 
the peasantry live in this country." 


Northampton is a small town, so clean, 
neat, and agreeably situated, that it richly 
deserves the name of *' INIassachusetts' favou- 
rite doll." It may be called a village, rather 
than a town. The streets are few ; and the 
whole is not unlike a group of country seats, 
surrounded with gardens, and built in a row 
close to each other, for the inspection and 
admiration of spectators. 

The houses, chiefly of wood, are painted 
white, with green blinds. Trees are planted 
in all the streets, or rather roads, for they 
are not paved ; and shrubberies, with a thou- 
sand different flowers, greet the passengers 
with their beautiful fragrance. 

Northampton carries on a considerable 
trade with the neighbouring country. Con- 
necticut River, distant about a mile and a 
half, and Farmington and Hampshire Canal, 
which commences here, and directs its course 
to New Haven, a distance of seventy-eight 
miles, contribute in no small degree to its 
flourishing state. But it is not its commerce, 
industry, or manufactures, which attract 
numbers of strangers to this spot every year. 
It is to view the handsome plan in which the 
village is laid out that thousands visit it. Few 
things have given me greater pleasure than 


the sight of this spot in Massachusetts and 
the villages Cananclaigua and Geneva in the 
State of New York, which are equally attrac- 
tive. It was something so cheering and new 
to find myself in the heart of a village, with- 
out being obliged to attach to it the idea of 
dirt and uncleanliness — to see, in its stead, 
neat churches, a bank, printing-offices, &c., 
with a population of nearly three thousand 
seven hundred souls, that I remained several 
days longer than I originally intended. 

It may be remarked that villages, properly 
so called, are hardly found in the United 
States : spots that spring up from nothing do 
not become in the first instance villages or 
hamlets. They take a leap from insignificance 
to the rank of towns ; the rise is so rapid that 
in a very short time they are able to maintain 
a bank and a printing-office — two establish- 
ments which Europeans only think of in re- 
gular towns. The timber is hardly cut for the 
purpose of laying the foundation for houses 
before it is publicly announced that a news- 
paper is published in such and such a town, 
that a bank is in full operation, that canals 
are cut, railroads planned, and steamboats 
being built, to facilitate the communication 
with the new city, sprung up, as it were, by 

VOL. I. 1 


magic. I will resume this subject in a future 

Not far from Northampton is a mountain 
called Mount Holyoke, the summit of which 
is, or ought to be, visited by every traveller 
passing through this part of the country who 
wishes to enjoy a remarkably fine prospect. 
I proceeded thither on horseback, and arrived 
at the foot of the mountain, after having 
crossed the stream in a ferry-boat propelled 
by horses. The road towards the top was at 
first both steep and stony ; but my horse, ac- 
customed no doubt to the rough and irregular 
track, did not stumble. At length, however, 
the poor animal became so completely ex- 
hausted, that he could not advance another 
step : traces of a road disappeared, and in 
its stead a few steps made of loose stones 
proved to me the necessity of leaving the 
horse behind till I returned. I continued 
climbing up the hill. Whoever has weak 
nerves, a delicate constitution, or is subject 
to giddiness, I would particularly recommend 
to abstain from visiting the summit of Mount 
Holyoke. Not only is a person obliged at 
certain places to take giant-steps from tree 
to branch, and from branch to tree, but to 
tread on stones without any solid foundation 


whatever! These, very unceremoniously, slip 
away under the weight ; and, if particular 
attention be not paid, the visiter is apt to take 
a leap down the precipice in company with 
the fragments of the rock. 

I reached, however, the top, a distance 
of nine hundred and ninety feet, in company 
with several friends, without any accident, 
and our pains were then richly repaid. It 
was not a Swiss panorama, the icebergs 
being wanted, but a prospect which, once 
beheld, cannot easily be effaced from me- 
mory. The whole landscape beneath resem- 
bled a circle -bound picture, viewed from 
the centre. On one side appeared Connec- 
ticut river, serpentining in various direc- 
tions, sometimes disappearing, then showing 
itself again, forming, to the south-west, 
a peninsula, three and a quarter miles in 
circumference, and only about two hundred 
and twenty fathoms across the isthmus ; 
at last, towards the south, at the foot of 
Mount Tom, it is entirely lost to the sight : 
here, the smoke arising from the cataracts 
at South Hadley is perceivable. But, both 
from far and near, valle3^s, hills, mountains, 
fields, meadows, and forests, were seen, all 
dressed in the mantle of the richest vegeta- 

I 2 


tion. Corn-fields, covered with abundant and 
ripe crops, remunerated the labours of the 
husbandmen, and farmers were seen occupied 
in cutting' golden harvests : others again, 
sown with oats and Indian corn, had not yet 
changed the garb of spring for that of au- 
tumn. Flocks of cattle crowded the valleys : 
they were feeding on the most luxuriant 
herbs, whilst teams of oxen carried from the 
fields loads of new-cut hay. In the midst of 
this picture of industry, and among a variety 
of colours, private dwellings of farmers were 
visible, equally pleasing to the eye by their 
whiteness and lofty green blinds ; and also 
small towns (Northampton, Had ley, Amherst, 
&c.,) surrounded by rows of full grown trees ; 
and last of all, as if strewed over the ground, 
a number of handsome churches, of which I 
counted at least thirty. 

The day was far advanced when I quitted 
this eminence, and the descent required as 
much precaution as the ascent. We rejoined 
with pleasure our horses at the place we 
left them, and returned to Northampton ex- 
tremely fatigued, but delighted with our 

On the following morning I started for 
Springfield, a small town on the banks of the 


same river, where a musket factory, upon a 
large scale, is carried on upon account of 
government. The road leading to it passes 
through a wild country, following the direc- 
tion of the river. In South Hadley, there are 
two waterfalls, one thirty-two, the other fifty- 
two feet high, both, as is customary in Ame- 
rica, made available for working mills. Ano- 
ther little town called Hadley, also situated 
on the road, fixed my attention, as being one 
of the oldest in the State. It was here the 
two regicides and Judges Whalley and Goffe, 
daring the reign of Charles II., sought an 
asylum to evade persecution. During their 
short residence at Hadley, it happened that 
the Indians, then in open warfare with the 
Colonists, attacked the town. Soldiers were 
not wanted to defend it, but there were no 
leaders. In this emergency, a stranger pre- 
sented himself, whose appearance inspired re- 
spect, and whose counsels and example instilled 
courage to the desponding inhabitants. Per- 
sonal bravery, added to a great fund of military 
acquirements, insured a complete victory; and, 
after a short struggle, the Indians owed their 
safety only to flight. Their warwhoop had 
hardly ceased, and the fugitives had only just 
quitted the neighbouring woods, before the 


stranger disappeared. This gave rise, in these 
superstitious times, to a general belief that 
the individual must have been the protecting 
patron of the town, or rather its guardian 
angel. But who was this stranger? The 
fugitive, persecuted, unfortunate Goffe, who, 
at the risk of being himself taken, quitted 
his place of concealment to rescue a town 
from danger, in which he did not dare to show 
himself publicly, and where his head would 
unquestionably have fallen under the axe of 
the executioner had his person been recog- 

The gun -factory at Springfield deserves to 
be visited by every traveller. More than ten 
thousand muskets are manufactured here 
every year : I was even assured, that fifteen 
thousand have been turned out in that time. 
To judge by the quantity, it may be inferred 
that all the inhabitants are occupied in this 
branch ; but this is not the case : the sim- 
plest and most ingenious machinery is used 
as a substitute for manual labour. This 
manufactory has, in consequence, acquired 
a high degree of perfection, both in point of 
economy and solidity. If the great wages 
paid to the working people, and to able lock- 
smiths, for instance, from one and a quarter to 


two dollars a day is taken into consideration, 
it cannot be wondered at if a ready-made 
musket costs about ten dollars. This prime 
cost, looked upon as cheap in America, would 
be considerably higher if manual labour was 
exclusively employed to carry on the works. 
The stock-making, which in the North of 
Europe is done by several persons, and forms 
the most expensive part of this species of 
manufacture, is here prepared by a single 
machine. The annual expences of this esta- 
blishment are upon an average one hundred 
and ninety thousand dollars. 

The work is done in different houses : there 
are only a few factory buildings in which the 
people work together in large rooms or halls, 
occupying nearly the whole range of the 
building ; the other houses are converted into 
small workshops, scattered over the whole 
town, in which particular branches of the 
trade are carried on. Every thing is w^orked 
by water, of which there is great abundance. 
The muskets, when finished, have a very 
fine appearance, though rather heavy, attri- 
butable in a great measure, 1 should suppose, 
to the size and clumsiness of the locks. The 
barrels and bayonets, formerly made of Swe- 
dish iron only, but now of American also, are 


painted brown for the purpose of preserving 
them from rust. The stock is of wahuit, a 
very strong and hard species of wood. The 
mode of trying' the strength of the spring 
imder the touchhole is by means of a balance, 
extremely simple in its construction, but which 
very effectually puts the spring to the test, 
in making it support a weight of one hundred 
and twenty pounds. All the component parts 
of the musket are, besides, so made, that they 
fit any musket manufactured there, and may 
be taken from one to another. 

The factory is under the direction of a super- 
intendent appointed by government, whose 
business is to receive from the workmen dif- 
ferent parts of the musket, examine them, and 
pay the people according to a fixed rate for 
their work : he afterwards deposits the ready- 
made muskets in an arsenal close by, lately 
erected in lieu of the old one consumed by 

The workmen are under no control of the 
manager, further than merely delivering their 
work and receiving pay. Their number is 
about two hundred and eighty : they have, 
for the most part, their own houses and a 
piece of ground adjoining. Poverty is seldom 
discovered among them, nor are they addicted 


to indolence, drunkenness, or any other vice. 
Those not possessed of sufficient property to 
have their own houses, live at a cheap rate 
with their companions, till, by dint of industry 
and economy, they are able to become propri- 
etors themselves. What particularly contri- 
butes to this happy state of things among 
the workmen may be traced to the following 
causes : First, Temperance Societies, and, 
second. Saving* Banks, two establishments 
which both here and in other manufacturing 
towns in America have really done wonders 
among the labouring classes, and not a little 
contributed to their improvement. Not only 
have they increased the stock of the labour- 
ing man, bat they have effected another good, 
superior to all the rest — a moral and intellec- 
tual amelioration. The time generally spent 
in conviviality and inebriety, and in conver- 
sations destitute of all interest and utility, 
is now employed in reading instructive books, 
from which they derive many useful acquire- 
ments, confirming them in the belief that 
nothing but a regular life can make them 
happy and prosperous, and which they are 
equally anxious to inculcate into the minds 
of their children. This establishes, in a sa- 
tisfactory manner, the otherwise questionable 


fact, that I found, among these smiths and 
stockmakers, individuals who were " Gentle- 
men," in the true acceptation of the w^ord, 
with whom I could converse on subjects which 
would have appeared something like hiero- 
glyphics to other factory men ; they were not 
only acquainted with every improvement 
lately introduced in their particular trade, 
the correctness of which they were able to 
canvass, but had also invented several things 
themselves, and could prove their utility. 
They were, moreover, civil, hospitable, and 
had good manners. Some laid by their work 
when I entered the workshops, and insisted 
on going round and showing me every thing 
that might be interesting : I met no one who 
did not immediately discontinue his occupa- 
tion, in order to give the stranger an oppor- 
tunity of examining every thing, and this, 
too, as long as he pleased. To offer the 
slightest remuneration is considered an insult, 
and to receive it would be equally degrading. 
One of these hospitable men went even as 
far as to insist on my going home to his house, 
although in the busiest part of the day, with 
a view, as he expressed himself, " to see how 
neatly and comfortably he lived." I accom- 
panied him, accordingly, to a small but clean 


one-story frame house, the outside painted 
white, and the inside as neat as a boudoir. 
Two rooms and a kitchen formed the whole 
establishment; and, although small, was ex- 
tremely pleasant. Every thing- bore the 
stamp of being regulated by a steady and 
industrious mistress ; and in this I was by 
no means deceived, for she was indeed an 
unexceptionable wife. The husband extolled 
her merits in a manner which reflected 
the greatest honour on him : she entered 
the room shortly afterwards, leading a boy 
and a girl by the hand, simply but neatly 
dressed, and bowing to the stranger ; the 
whole ceremony was performed in a manner 
seldom witnessed in Europe by a woman in 
her situation in life. If domestic felicity exists 
on earth, it certainly might be traced to 
this unostentatious dwelling ; both wife and 
husband cast a glance at each other and 
at their children, truly indicative of hap- 

My landlord, justly proud of his comfort- 
able home, and anxious to show me every 
thing, from the garret to the cellar, now 
requested me to accompany him to the 
garden adjoining the house, also his property, 
and tastefully laid out by his own hands. 


*' This small enclosure," said he, " has been 
made by myself, the same year I married. 
All the flowers, vegetables, shrubberies, and 
fruit-trees, that you see have been planted 
and nursed by this hand." 

The garden bore evident marks of having 
been greatly taken care of : the trees almost 
sunk under the weight of various fruits. I 
also discovered vines, of which more than ten 
were crowded with grapes. On returning to 
the house, I was not a little surprised — I 
may add, agreeably surprised — to find that 
the mistress had, during our temporary ab- 
sence, prepared a cold collation, of which no 
landlady need have been ashamed. The 
table-cloth partook of the whiteness of snow ; 
and, although the knives and forks could not 
lay claim to extraordinary beauty, yet the 
whole arrangement was so inviting, that it 
was truly delightful to sit down to the frugal 
and hospitable board. 

My landlord knew I came from Europe, 
though not from what part ; but, on being- 
apprized of the country that gave me birth, 
he exclaimed with joy, whilst emptying a 
glass of cider, '' From Sweden ! From the 
land of the honest and the brave ! I should 
amazingly like to get better acquainted with 


that country. The inhabitants of the Scan- 
dinavian Peninsula, they say, are a hardy 
race. In this opinion I fully coincide ; for a 
country producing* such excellent iron as 
Sweden must also necessarily be the abode 
of g'ood people. Tell me what is the name of 
your actual President?" I acquainted him 
with our form of government. 

" Well," rejoined he, " every nation has its 
own opinions in similar matters ; what suits 
one country and one people does not suit 
another. For my part, I am not fitted to live 
under the rule of royalty ; let us therefore 
drop the subject, and drink to the health of 
our absent friends." This was done. Who 
could possibly have thought that this indivi- 
dual was a mere locksmith, brought up to the 
trade from infancy, and who had never emi- 
grated further than a few miles from Spring- 
field ? 

On my return to Northampton, I lost no 
time in continuing my journey to Boston. 
The distance is about ninety-one miles, which 
is performed in seventeen hours. 

The road is sandy, hilly, and uniform, lead- 
ing through a country destitute of interest, 
which made the journey doubly toilsome and 
fatiguing. The drivers, besides, were in the 


habit of watering their horses every quarter 
of a mile ; and this circumstance, added to 
the frequency of changing coaches, and the 
accompanying inconvenience of removing lug- 
gage, at least five times during our progress, 
completely exhausted my patience. The 
country appeared poor and indifferent. In 
the midst of a real desert, fit only for the 
growth of pines, my eyes were all of a sudden 
gratified with the sight of a flourishing manu- 
facturing place called Ware ; so named from 
the river that runs through it. Few villages 
have had so rapid a rise as this. The chil- 
dren employed in the manufactories remember 
still the time when not a house was found on 
the spot where the great cotton-factories are 
now erected. They are the joint property of 
particular companies, who bought lots of land 
around the place on speculation, for the pur- 
pose of establishing these factories. That 
they have proved successful beyond expecta- 
tion is easily seen by their present prosperous 

A little further on, I passed through ano- 
ther small place, having also the appearance 
of being constantly whitewashed, called Wor- 
cester, larger in size than any of those I had 
hitherto visited in the New England States, 


and built, perhaps, upon a more elegant 
scale. The houses all look new, adorned 
with colonnades of the Doric and Corinthian 
order, and surrounded by gardens and trees, 
which give them alike the appearance of rural 
and town residences. A railroad was then 
being constructed from this town to Boston, a 
distance of forty-three miles, which is to be 
completed in the course of a few years, and 
from which the greatest results are anticipated. 
" Blackstone Canal," as it is called, goes from 
this place to New Providence, in Rhode 
Island, opening a communication from the 
interior of the country with the East River 
and New York. 

The country between Worcester and Bos- 
ton appears more fertile : the nearer one ap- 
proaches the latter city, the more gratified is 
the eye with the sight of cultivated tracts of 
land, and delightful country seats. The 
houses follow each other in more rapid suc- 
cession ; and one village hardly disappears 
before the next is visible. More cottages, in 
the English style, are seen on this road, and 
in the vicinity of Boston, than I have disco- 
vered in my subsequent journey through 
nearly all the States of the Union. They are 
generally of wood, painted white, with open 


porticoes on every side of the house, thus 
giving a delightful shade and coolness to the 
rooms. These cottages were mostly built on 
an elevated grass mound, about four feet 
high on one side, above a close-cut field, not 
unlike the smooth surface of a green billiard- 
table ; and on the other side inclosed by 
gardens and parks. 

The churches are also of wood, and painted 
white. The windows, as well as those of 
the dwelling houses, have all green blinds, 
tastefully ornamented, which gives to these 
country churches the neatest and most be- 
coming appearance I have ever seen. They 
invariably occupied the most prominent situa- 
tion in the villages. Such was the aspect of 
the rural spots, which by degrees prepared me 
for the sight of Boston. When yet ten miles 
distant, every object announced the approach 
to a large city. The road became wider, hard, 
and well kept ; the country assumed a cultiva- 
ted and snug appearance ; country residences 
were more frequent ; gigs and landaus passed 
each other. In the midst of all this appeared 
a city, crowned with an elevated cupola. A 
long bridge led me into it ; and I was now in 
the midst of Boston. 


Get ail- si froid, qui congele le souffle de la respiration, fait rentrer 
la chaleur dans I'ame ; et la nature dans ces climats ne parait faite 
que pour repousser Thomme en lui-meme. 


Boston is the capital of Massachusetts, 
and is one of the oldest cities in the Union. Its 
advantageous situation for commerce, added 
to the circumstance of its possessing within 
its precincts a community wholly devoted to 
the occupation of trade and navigation, places 
Boston in the rank of the second town in the 
United States with regard to shipping. The 
city is situated on a peninsula which joins the 
main land by means of an isthmus, extending 
to a small delightful village called Roxburg. 
The original name of Boston was Trimoun- 
tain, derived from its situation on three emi- 
nences : the present one, if I mistake not, was 
given after a town of that name in Lincoln- 
shire, England, being the birth-place of the 

VOL. I. K 

130 BOSTON. 

first preacher in Boston, in commemoration 
of whom the city was called. 

The harbour is very spacious and safe : 
five hundred ships, it is said, may safely and 
without difficulty ride at anchor, the bay 
being very extensive. The inlet, however, is 
rather narrow, admitting barely two ships 
abreast: whilst about eighty small islands, 
partly inhabited, partly uninhabited, but more 
or less covered with verdure, are interspersed 
in every direction. Two forts for the defence 
of the port have been erected on those nearest 
the sea. 

The exterior of Boston is striking. On 
approaching it, either from the sea-side or by 
some of the numerous bridges which connect 
it, the stranger receives an impression which 
is fully realized by a nearer acquaint- 
ance with the different objects. The State- 
house, situate on the most elevated point in 
the city, forms, as it were, the extremity of 
a pyramid rising out of the sea. Whichever 
way one goes, the high cupola is always visi- 
ble. The number of other public buildings is 
also considerable, and some are distinguished 
by good taste. Private dwellings are built 
partly of granite, partly of brick, but mostly 
of the latter, and then seldom painted : a few, 


however, are white. Their exterior appear- 
ance has nothing striking in point of archi- 
tecture, but the interior arrangements are 
extremely commodious. The rooms are not 
so spacious as those in Europe, but they ap- 
peared to me very comfortable. Simplicity 
was every where apparent. 

The streets are narrow : not one can be 
compared to Broadway in New York. In the 
old part of the town particularly, there are 
some so confined and crooked, that it is nearly 
impossible to distinguish an object fifty yards 
ahead. The new part, however, is very dif- 
ferent, but still I cannot say that there is any 
street particularly fine. 

I lost no time in visiting the Statehouse, 
the boast of the city. It is a brick building, 
with a double row of pillars forming the front. 
From the cupola, which rises above all other 
buildings, the view is justly admired by every 
stranger. The beautiful and comfortable city 
presents itself in all its charm. The cleanli- 
ness of the streets — the numerous churches, 
with their high steeples — the extensive walks 
— the long bridges — the wharfs, covered with 
goods, and built in the form of basins, in which 
the vessels conveniently load and unload — 
the amphitheatre-like harbour, filled with 

R 2 


boats, sloops, ships, and steamers — further, 
Charlestown with part of the navy — Bunk- 
er's Hill with the half finished monument — 
the heights of Dorchester, memorable in the 
annals of the revolution as being occupied by 
Washington the night preceding the 4th of 
March, 1776 — Cambridge, with its University 
— the new Cemetery of Mount Auburn — 
numerous country-seats in every direction — 
Brighton, Roxburg, and other neat villages 
in the vicinity — and, finally, the great Atlan- 
tic Ocean, rolling its bottomless waves to 
the shores of Europe — all these different 
views form a panorama hardly to be ex- 
celled in beauty. 

It is in the Statehouse that the Legisla- 
ture of Massachusetts generally hold their 
sittings. The Senate, consisting of forty 
members, besides the President, has its own 
separate hall, in which their annual assemblies 
are kept. This is also the case with the 
Second Chamber, whose members in 1832 
amounted to four hundred and seventy-nine ; 
it has likewise a separate hall in the same 
building. Neither Chamber was sitting du- 
ring my residence in Boston. 

On the ground floor, opposite the principal 
entrance, in a niche made for that purpose, 

CHANTREy's statue of WASHINGTON. 133 

may be seen Chantrey's celebrated statue of 
AVashing'ton. The great English sculptor 
has upon this occasion displayed an unusual 
degree of ability and genius. The very first 
glance is striking ; it dev elops something so 
lofty and noble, that even the most indifferent 
spectator is seized with awe and admiration. 
Washington is represented in a standing at- 
titude, covered with a mantle, carelessly yet 
tastefully thrown around him, which he raises 
with one hand, resting it on his bosom. The 
head is bare, and the features perfectly re- 
semble those of the original. His powdered 
hair, his high forehead, his expressive eyes — 
to these and to every lineament has the 
chisel of the artist given life. I was in- 
formed that for this chef cVceuvre of the last 
of the Romans, America's great Saint, the 
sculptor received the sum of ten thousand 

Opposite this edifice is a public walk, which 
by the caprice of fashion has become the most 
private of all. Seldom or ever is any lady to 
be seen here, the whimsical goddess of fashion 
having in her wisdom shown symptoms of 
indifference to this promenade; and the 
consequence is, that this place, formerly 
frequented by the Bostonians in great num- 


bers, is now nearly deserted ; for who would 
venture to disobey the decrees of such an 
omnipotent Deity? This revolution in taste 
has been a source of great regret to many 
individuals, as the walk had always been 
patronised by the respectable part of the 
community, but particularly by the fair sex. 
I remember having one day had a conver- 
sation with a young lady of Boston on this 
head, when I took the liberty of making some 
free allusions to the deserted walk. Her re- 
ply was of an entirely opposite character : she 
made the most poetical panegyric with regard 
.to the pastoral beauty of the place, the vene- 
rable age of the trees, the free and delightful 
prospect. In all these observations I joined 
heartily, but proposed nevertheless an alter- 
ation, namely, that the straight rows of trees, 
with the open green space in the middle, 
should be converted into an English park, 
with winding walks, and planted with shrub- 
beries. The lady here suddenly interrupted 
the thread of my conversation, by drily 
observing : ** We are perfectly satisfied with 
what we have got ; we don't want any alter- 
ation !" In this place is a little pond, in which 
children amuse themselves in navigating men- 
of-war half a yard long, and firing broadsides 

MUSIC. 135 

on the shoals of singing frogs who have here 
taken up their residence. I ventured to 
christen this pond, which now goes by the 
name of the Frog Pond. 

This park or walk is on three sides sur- 
rounded by houses, unquestionably the best 
in the city. The season was still very warm, 
(in August) and all the windows were open ; 
in almost every mansion, it was customary to 
have music in the evening. These melodious 
sounds attracted a number of passers-by, and 
many a delightful evening have I spent in 
this way. Proceeding from house to house, 
I listened with rapture to very fine music and 
many excellent voices. More than once was 
I caught whilst indulging in this amusement, 
leaning over the iron railing fronting the 
windows : more than one glance did I receive 
from venerable parents seated behind the 
blinds ; but nothing, so long as the singing 
or playing continued, could divert my atten- 
tion. I mention this circumstance merely in 
case this book should by chance happen to 
find its way to any family in hospitable Bos- 
ton, that I may be allowed to take this oppor- 
tunity of testifying my gratitude to the un- 
known fair singers for the fine entertainment 
they afforded me. 


Among the public buildings generally 
shown to strangers are the following : Fa- 
neuil Hall, the Market, the Post Office, the 
different Banks, the Athenaeum, and the Free- 
masons' Lodge. In the first-mentioned, where 
all public meetings are held, there is a hall 
in which the first deliberations took place 
during the revolutionary war, and which had 
subsequently so great an influence on the 
result of the struggle for independence. This 
hall is rather large, and fitted up with seats 
along the two sides. Above the two en- 
trances are written in large characters the 
immortal names of Washington, Kosciusko, 
Lafayette. On the opposite wall several 
portraits are hung, among which those of 
AVashington, Lafayette, and Hancock (the 
first President), are conspicuous ; and around 
these were placed the names of the warriors 
who had distinguished themselves by sea or 
by land during the contest for liberty. These 
names were entwined in wreaths of laurel, to 
show that they were imperishable in the 
memory of grateful countrymen. 

The market is the largest of its kind in the 
United States: it is built of granite, five hun- 
dred and thirty-six feet in length, and is two 
stories high. Pillars, also of granite, are at 


each end ; and on both sides, the length of 
the buildhig, neat shops are fitted up. I was 
curious to visit this place one morning*, during 
the market hour. The approach was almost 
impossible from the concourse of people ; but, 
by degrees, as the bargains were concluded, I 
obtained admittance. Each kind of trade had a 
separate stand ; butchers were not mixed with 
fishmongers, nor these with fruitmen. Every 
thing bore the stamp of convenience and 
cleanliness. The butchers' stalls did not 
inspire that distaste too often produced on 
visiting similar places in Europe, nor was 
there any offensive smell perceptible where 
fish was vended ; and with regard to the 
fruit shops, though not supplied with great 
variety, they were well kept. 

I had often heard that married men in 
America are in the habit of attending market 
themselves in the morning, to provide the 
necessary articles for their families ; a custom 
which with us on the other side of the At- 
lantic exclusively belongs to the department 
of the cook. Mrs. Trollope mentioned the 
same in her history of " Domestic Manners of 
the Americans ;" but, on that very account, 1 
considered the statement an exaggeration, 
and rather inclined to the contrary opinion. 


But a few minutes' stay in the market soon 
undeceived me. Several of the married gen- 
tlemen, whose acquaintance I had made on 
the preceding day, I met here, occupied in 
purchasing* and sending home meat, fish, 
vegetables, and fruit ; in short, all the wants 
for the day. Although I cannot easily be 
persuaded that this occupation necessarily 
belongs to a man, yet it may be tolerated 
perhaps in a country where the manner of 
living is unostentatious, and where one solid 
joint, upon ordinary occasions, forms alone 
the whole repast. It may moreover be a 
pleasing sight to visit a place where the 
tasteful and cleanly exhibition of different 
articles almost invites the visiter to become 
a purchaser. But to adopt this method 
in towns where established custom requires 
a variety of dishes, differently dressed, and 
of various kinds, would be rather a trou- 
blesome task ; to acquit himself satisfac- 
torily, a man must indeed be a confirmed 

During my stay in Boston I had frequent 
opportunities of witnessing the prevalence of 
this custom, and found that almost all the mar- 
ried men perform this morning walk. At first 
it appeared strange to me how they could so 

THE freemasons' LODGE. 139 

correctly know the exact market prices of the 
most trifling' article ; but it was soon ex- 
plained. At a dinner, at which I happened 
to be present, the lady of the house showed 
perfect ignorance of the cost of vegetables and 
fruit, and was obliged to apply to the husband 
for information, which she did in these words : 
" My dear, what is the price of sweet pota- 
toes ? Grapes and peaches, what are they 
worth ?" But each country has its customs ; 
I shall therefore abstain from all comment, 
merely mentioning the circumstance. 

The Freemasons' Lodge is a poor imitation 
of Gothic architecture : there is always some- 
thing sublime and lofty attached to this mode 
of building. I have never yet contemplated 
a Gothic structure, without thinking that I 
ought to kneel dow^n and worship the Deity, 
who speaks so clearly and distinctly to our 
sensitive hearts in the splendour of the whole 
fabric, and in the beauty of the minutest 
part of it. Far from exciting this sensation, 
the Freemasons' Lodge appeared to me as 
if built upon a small scale, and sketched by a 
master of ordinary talents. I do not pretend 
to say that the dimensions were incorrect, but 
certainly tasteless. The ornamental part 
seemed out of place ; and where there were no 


ornaments, the nakedness was obvious. The 
architecture of most public and private build- 
ings in America is, unfortunately, copied 
partly from England, partly from Italy, and 
even from Greece ; but is seldom preserved in 
its original taste. The temple of Theseus at 
Athens, St. Peter's at Rome, and a house in 
Regent Street, London, are all mixed toge- 
ther ; and out of this variety a whole is pro- 
duced, which is denominated American archi- 
tecture. " The genius of architecture," says 
Jefferson, this acute and experienced judge 
of the fine arts, *' seems to have shed her 
maledictions over this land." 

During the whole of my journey through 
the United States, I never saw a house that 
could be compared to any of the palaces in 
the Old World ; nor did I, in fact, expect it ; 
but the recollection of Athens and Rome had, 
since my youth, so strongly impressed upon 
my mind the idea that no Republics could 
exist without a forum, decorated with statues, 
temples, triumphal arches, and palaces, that 
it was not without difficulty I changed my 
opinion, and began to conceive that liberty, 
glory, and patriotism, may even thrive in 
common dwellings, without statues, without 
temples, without triumphal arches, without 


palaces. But America is still a young' Repub- 
lic ; the time may yet come when forums and 
arches will be raised. 

" A Republican Government can in no 
manner more appropriately exhibit its magni- 
ficence than by the grandeur or beauty of its 
public structures. A noble hall, for the pur- 
poses of legislation or justice, or a grand pile 
of buildings for the uses of learning, is the 
immediate property of the people, and forms 
a portion of the inheritance of the humblest 
citizen. An enlightened patriotism should, 
indeed, rest upon much more solid ground ; 
but no man, who knows and feels that, even in 
our best and wisest moments, we can never 
become wholly creatures of reason, will object 
to the aid of local pride and natural associa- 
tion, to strengthen and animate his love of 
country. The ancient legislators understood 
the force of such principles w^ell. In the mind 
of an ancient Greek, the history of his country, 
her solemn festivals, her national rites, her 
legislation, her justice, were indissolubly com- 
bined with the images of every thing that 
was beautiful or sublime in art." Thus 
speaks one of America's greatest statesmen 
and orators, when alluding to the architec- 
ture of his own country. I mention this as a 


proof that my opinion in regard to American 
architecture is corroborated by one of her own 
sons,'^ and that this art, which approaches 
nearest Nature's greatness and sublimity, 
now forms a subject of deep contemplation 
with thinking men in America. May then the 
curse, which Mr. Jefferson asserts has been 
heaped over the country by an angry genius, 
soon be converted into tenderness, and this 
art not fail to overtake her sisters, who have 
already considerably distanced her ! 

The Freemasons erected this building at 
their own expence ; but, suspicions having 
shortly afterwards gained ground that they 
had clandestinely made away with an indi- 
vidual who suddenly disappeared, this event 
produced so great an effect on the State 
government, that a law was promulgated, 
enacting that no more lodges would be 
tolerated in Massachusetts. Under these 
circumstances, they were obliged to let the 
hall for public meetings, &ic ; and it was at 
one of these I was for the first time introduced 
into this building. One of the Temperance 
Societies, so numerous in America, had there 

• G. C. Verplanck, member of Conjjress for the State of New 
York in 1833. Vide his masterly speech, deiivered in May, 1S24, 
on '^ The Fine Arts in America." 


a public meeting^. I lost no time in attending 
it, curious to know what progress these asso- 
ciations had made in the country in which 
they had at first originated . 

The baneful and dangerous influence which 
intemperance has every where exerted on the 
moral and physical condition of man is a 
subject seriously occupying the attention of 
every Christian and philanthropist. Instances 
of suicides, committed under the effect of ine- 
briety, are of common occurrence in America 
as well as in England. The ocean checks 
not this killing propensity. Once addicted to 
the demoralizing habit, the votary is pre- 
cisely the same, whether he be an inhabitant 
of the shores of Albion, of the mountains of 
Scandinavia, or a backwoodsman in North 
America. Ardent spirit is an idol, equally 
worshipped under the starry sky of the north 
and the burning sun of the tropics : every 
where the pernicious effects are the same. 
Considerable quantities of rum and whisky, 
both of execrable quality, are consumed in 
the United States, particularly in the western 
parts, where they are continually in requisition. 
Spirituous liquors are sold in all directions. 
In the towns it is next to impossible to pro- 
ceed fifty yards without meeting what is 


called a " grog shop," where bottles filled 
with the tempting liquid adorn the windows. 
Again, in the country, there is scarcely a house 
where whisky is not sold, and a kind of 
drinking room established. When travelling 
by the mail or stage, passengers generally 
get out every time the coach stops to change 
or water horses, in order to moisten their 
palates. On board steamboats there is, if 
I may be allowed the expression, a kind of 
peryetuum mohile of circulating tankards, filled 
with brandy and water, punch, sangarie, and 
other compounds. 

Of such a variety are the different mixtures 
composed, that it requires a long time and 
no ordinary degree of acuteness to get ac- 
quainted with their denomination. I re- 
member once, in one of the larger towns west 
of the Alleghany Mountains, overhearing a 
conversation between two respectable indi- 
viduals, as to the best place of taking a sip 
in the morning ; when one of the parties 
affirmed, on the salvation of his soul, that 
none could make a better mint-julep than Mr. 
A. ; whilst his opponent called heaven and 
earth to witness that no living being had as 
yet excelled Mr. B. in the art of concocting 



From all this one is apt to infer that ine- 
briated persons are every where to be seen ; 
but this is far from being the case. In no 
country I have hitherto visited have I seen 
so few drunken people in the streets as in 
America ; and, during a whole winter's resi- 
dence in New York, the largest city in the 
Union, I can safely assert that I only saw a 
few intoxicated stragglers, and they were 
mostly foreigners. This general addiction to 
hard drinking is, however, more conspicuous 
in the States most remote from the Atlantic 
Ocean, although pretty prevalent in the eastern 
ones also. The majority of crimes are fostered 
and committed under the influence of this 
vice ; in the prisons, the proportion of criminals 
addicted to this propensity to those who are 
not is as three and a half or four to one. In 
the State prison at Auburn, for instance, there 
was, according to the report for 1833, of the 
former number five hundred and eight, whilst 
of the latter, only one hundred and seventy- 

'' Four-fifths of all crimes committed in the 
United States," says Mr. Grundy, senator for 
Tennessee, a gentleman whose legal experi- 
ence is of thirty years' standing, "maybe 
traced to drunkenness as the prime cause." 

VOL. I. ^ 


'* Were it possible," remarks Mr. Wirt, another 
profound American lawyer, to ** obtain statis- 
tical details of unfortunate families and indi- 
viduals, and at the same time ascertain the 
real cause of their misery, I feel persuaded 
that, in nine cases out of ten, perhaps even a 
larger proportion, the use of ardent spirits 
would materially have contributed to this 
state of things." ** Of seventy-seven persons," 
says the fifth report of the American Tem- 
perance Society for 1832, " found dead in va- 
rious places in the country, sixty-seven were 
declared by the coroner's inquest to have 
perished from excessive drinking." 

With similar and many other facts before 
us, it is no wonder that a radical reform, 
as far as it could be effected, was seriously 
contemplated ; and the first Temperance So- 
ciety was in consequence instituted in Massa- 
chusetts. It is, in truth, a subject of strange 
contemplation that, in the nineteenth century, 
we Christians, who consider ourselves so 
superior to all other religious sects on the 
face of the earth, should endeavour to abolish 
drunkenness, a vice which already in the 
seventh century ceased to exist among the 
uncivilized adherents of Mahomet. But better 
late than never. America has given the first 


impulse : Europe listens with attention to the 

In the State of New York alone, there were 
already in 1832 one thousand one hundred 
and forty-five Temperance Societies, and in 
the whole Union, about the same time, more 
than five thousand similar associations. One 
million five hundred thousand persons had 
left off the use of strong liquors, and bound 
themselves not to procure any for other people. 
That these societies make incredible progress, 
and do much public good, is daily perceived 
by the diminished quantity of ardent spirits 
distilled in the country, and by the lessened 
importation from foreign parts. Great quan- 
tities of this article were formerly made in 
the New England States ; many of these dis- 
tilleries are now discontinued. In Boston, there 
was a general outcry among the sellers of 
spirits, against the ruinous tendency of the 
Temperance Societies ; they went even so far 
as to give vent to their displeasure in the 
public prints. But this did not prevent the 
success of the good cause. 

The importation of spirits into the United 
States, in the year J 824, amounted to five 
millions, two hundred and eighty-five thousand 
gallons ; and in 1830, only to one million, one 

L 2 


hundred and ninety-five thousand, showing- a 
difference in consumption of four millions, 
ninety thousand gallons in the course of six 
years, whilst the home distilleries declined in 
the same proportion. According to the first 
report of the American Temperance Society, 
the cost of ardent spirits consumed in the 
country exceeded forty millions of dollars 
per annum. The number of individuals who, 
by indulgence in this vice, descend to a pre- 
mature grave, was calculated, according to 
the same authority, to be no less than about 
thirty thousand every year. Both these 
amounts are now upon the decline ; and the 
numerous humane friends attached to these 
useful and praiseworthy associations antici- 
pate with confidence the period when drunken 
scenes will be as seldom witnessed as they 
are now of common occurrence. 

On leaving the meeting in question, in 
company with a clergyman from one of the 
Southern States, this gentleman related to me 
an anecdote, illustrative of the difficulty of 
converting a person once addicted to drunk- 
enness. '' If it be true," said he, " that man 
carries with him his passions and vices into 
the other world, it may reasonably be in- 
ferred that a drunkard continues the same 


there, if it be in his power to gratify his 
desires. A very respectable individual in 
Virginia," added he, " indulged in this pro- 
pensity, and was continually in a state of 
intoxication, although his friends incessantly 
warned him of the danger he incurred of 
suddenly ending his life under the influence 
of liquor. This friendly advice, however, 
was totally disregarded ; he apostrophised, 
and called them fanatics, whose only object 
was to deprive him of his sole earthly enjoy- 
ment ; and he continued his indulgence. One 
day, being as usual overloaded with spirits, 
and unconscious of what he did, his friends 
determined to try an experiment, namely, 
whether fear would make any impression 
upon him. They accordingly procured a 
coffin, wrapped him up in a winding sheet, 
and lowered it into one of the deepest pits of 
a neighbouring coal-mine. Darkness and 
silence dwelt in this frightful abode. After a 
while the drunkard recovered his senses. A 
few minutes' reflexion induced him to believe 
that he was actually dead, and that his friends 
were in the right. ' Well ! is it at length come 
so far ?' exclaimed he ; ' I am then no more ! 
But am I really dead ?' The friends who 
stood near him unseen answered with an 


impressive voice : * Yes, you are unquestion- 
ably dead, and buried too.' Shortly after- 
wards they appeared before him in disguise, 
with tapers in their hands, and raised the 
trembhng' man in order to inflict, by way of 
punishment, a sound bastinado. He now 
fancied himself in a real purgatory, and 
pitifully implored forgiveness for past tres- 
passes ; but they appeared inexorable, and 
continued the chastisement until perfectly 
exhausted ; they then retired, after having 
again inclosed the unfortunate man in the 
coffin. On hearing them take leave, he 
called out lustily, and in a supplicating 
tone : ' Halloo ! Halloo ! Mr. D— 1, wouldn't 
you be so kind as to procure me something 
to drink?'" 

A custom very prevalent in Boston is to 
perform serenades at night time, for the edi- 
fication of the fair sex. A young American 
proposed to me one evening to accompany 
him on a similar excursion. I accepted the 
offer, and repaired to the spot agreed upon, 
where four or five young men were already in 
attendance. Provided with a guitar and a 
flute, we started about midnight, and pro- 
ceeded, in the first instance, to a house in the 
lower part of the town, the residence of one 


of the belles of the city. In full imitation of 
the Italian fashion, we were wrapped up in 
cloaks, and formed a group exactly under 
the window stated to belong to the bed- 
chamber of the lady. The first piece per- 
formed was a duo between the two instru- 
ments; subsequently followed song's, with 
accompaniments. Within a few moments our 
attention was arrested by the noise of a 
window softly opening. I tried in vain to 
recognise some of the listeners ; the darkness 
of the room, however, prevented me from dis- 
tinguishing any object within. Our persons 
must, however, have been easily discernible 
in the bright moonlight ; for, a few days after- 
wards, the same ladies told me unhesitatingly 
that I had formed one of the party. It may 
be easily imagined how sentimental were the 
tones which pierced the ears of the listening 
fair ones, enhanced as they were by a beau- 
tiful moon — an invariable friend to sere- 
nades — and in what a delightful mood the 
young gentlemen must have been, after sing- 
ing and playing a dozen difficult airs. How 
the ladies in the window felt when the music 
ceased is not within my province to deter- 
mine. The whole company, actors and au- 
dience, appeared, nevertheless, to part under 



visible feelings of melancholy; and I hast- 
ened, half frozen, to my hotel, to dream of 
finding myself once more in la bella Italia, 
listening- to her nightly serenades. 

During all this time the cholera raged with 
the utmost virulence in New York and its 
vicinity. The dreadful epidemic had, on the 
21st July, reached its climax. But, though 
it was on the decline in August, and had 
entirely ceased about the middle of Sep- 
tember, still the panic prevailed every where 
in the country : so great indeed was the ap- 
prehension, that people were afraid of their 
own shadows, and abandoned friends and 
relatives, if either had the misfortune to be 
attacked by this frightful scourge. 

The following occurrence took place about 
this period, and illustrates unequivocally the 
terror generally experienced : an old man, of 
the name of Ballow, above fourscore, was 
suddenly seized with the disorder, whilst 
travelling in the stage between New York 
and Providence. The other passengers in 
the coach, fearful of infection, positively re- 
fused to allow him to remain inside, insist- 
ing that the driver should take him on the 
coach-box. The unhappy man was obliged 
to yield, although so reduced by weakness 



as hardly to be able to hold fast. Neither 
money nor entreaties could induce any of 
them to allow him a place inside ; and, as 
there happened to be a public hospital in the 
town through which they passed for the re- 
ception of cholera patients, the old man was 
left in the open street. No one dared to 
approach him : when it was absolutely neces- 
sary to pass that way, persons hastened by 
at as great a distance from him as possible. 

At length one individual, prompted by a 
large reward, was prevailed upon to convey 
him in a cart to a place called Cumberland, 
the very spot to which, in the first instance, 
he intended to proceed. On the following 
morning the poor patient was found lying on 
the steps of a neighbouring house. When he 
arrived at Cumberland, his place of nativity, 
where his brother was residing, he ordered 
the driver to set him down at the house of the 
latter; but — would this act of cruelty and 
barbarity be believed ? — even here the doors 
were shut against him. A barn, an unin- 
habited outhouse, was assigned to him as a 
lodging. And in this very barn, belonging 
to a brother, the helpless old man was suf- 
fered to expire alone and abandoned by the 
whole world ; his lips parched with thirst, 


and crawling under an accumulation of the 
most excruciating* sufferings, which never 
quitted him till life was extinct. A doctor, 
it is true, was called in ; but the pulse had 
already ceased to beat. He found only a 
lifeless corpse stretched on the straw. Is 
there a heart that can help feeling the 
deepest sympathy for an old man of eighty- 
five, who had travelled a distance of several 
hundred miles from Ohio, solely with a view 
of once more beholding the place that gave 
him birth, and of embracing, for the last 
time, his only remaining brother, and who, 
on arriving at the spot where he first saw the 
light, finds every avenue closed, and the same 
brother turning him adrift to end his suffer- 
ings in a desolate barn ? 

This was indeed a subject that could not 
escape the attention of the philanthropic and 
public-spirited inhabitants of Boston. A 
cholera hospital was immediately establish- 
ed, which, though not very large, proved in 
the sequel sufficiently spacious for the city. 
A society was also formed under the denomi- 
nation of " Relief Association," whose object 
was to assist and relieve all those who hap- 
pened to be attacked with the disease. Every 
class took part in it. Not only young and 


old bachelors became members ; elderly and 
married people, with wives and children, also 
enlisted. With the latter the risk was na- 
turally i^reater, as they might possibly, after 
attending their duty, bring contagion into 
their families ; but, despite all this, rich and 
poor added their names to the list. Enthu- 
siasm spread with the utmost rapidity ; all 
were hearty in the cause. Animated by the 
impulse of example, the citizens waited with 
perfect resignation the approach of the dis- 
order. They formed themselves into a kind 
of humane fraternity, determined to devote 
their lives to the cause of suffering fellow- 
creatures. The dreaded foe, however, made 
no serious attack : a few isolated cases only 
occurred. Thus did Boston, by the protect- 
ing hand of Providence, and by the firmness, 
prudence, and timely arrangements, of its 
citizens, escape a visitation, which proved so 
fatal in many places. 

The following rules were adopted by this 
benevolent Association : 

Whereas a number of citizens, resident in districts where cho- 
lera has made its appearance, have been seized with panic, and 
under its influence abandoned the sick without aid or attention, by 
which neglect many fatal cases have occurred, it has been deemed 
expedient, with a view to restore public confidence, and to check the 
calamity as far as possible, to form an Association, the members of 


wliich hereby bind themselves to succour and assist the sick, and 
take especial care that proper attention be paid to them. 

1st. This Society to be called " Relief Association." 

2nd. The members are divided into sixteen Committees, accord- 
ing to the diflferent wards in the city ; the duties are limited to their 
own ward — they have no connexion with each other. 

3rd. Each Committee has the right to elect its own President, or 
Vice President. 

4th. The Presidents of these Committees form collectively a 
Central Committee, which meets for mutual deliberations, and is 
empowered to vary the appointments of the Ward Committees, by 
exchanging the members, so as to make the duties and labours fall 
equally on every one. 

6th. As soon as a member is called upon to assist a patient, he 
must immediately either repair in person to the sick bed, or without 
delay procure the attendance of a doctor, and see that every care be 
taken of the patient. 

6th. The President of each Ward Committee must state to the 
Secretary of the Central Committee the name and place of resi- 
dence of each member. He is also bound to make a regular report 
to said Secretary, in case any of the members are prevented from 
attending to their duty, or wish to leave the city. 

7th. All funds, collected by subscriptions, to promote the object 
of this Association, are to be distributed by the Central Committee 
among the Ward Committees, and all accounts are afterwards to be 
examined by the former. 


J'aime a me peindre im vrai citoyen meditant dans son cabinet 
solitaire : la patrie est a ses cotes, la justice et I'hiimanite sont 
devant lui, les fantomes des malhevu-eiix I'environnent, la pitie 
I'agite, et des larmes coulent de ses yeux. 


No city in the whole Union has so many 
public institutions, having more or less be- 
nevolence and instruction for their object, as 
Boston. I shall only mention a few of the 
principal ones, as their number does not 
permit me to enlarge so fully on their merits 
as I could wish. 

Among these, the Lyceum of Boston un- 
questionably occupies a prominent place. It 
was founded, if I mistake not, about the year 
1829, and has ever since met with great suc- 
cess. This excellent institution is divided in 
classes, devoted to different sciences, such as 
mathematics, natural philosophy, astronomy, 
&c. The annual lectures have been nume- 
rously attended, and justly appreciated by 


visiters. The Lyceum has several branch 
establishments, some in Massachusetts, some 
in other States, and thereby materially con- 
tributes to the propagation of general know- 

The Mechanics' Lyceum is not exactly on 
the same plan as the former, but has, never- 
theless, done a great deal of good among that 
class of citizens whose name it bears. 1 was 
confidently assured that many of its members 
are men of no ordinary information. The 
society publishes a periodical, called " The 
Young Mechanic," which possesses merit, 
and gains an increased circulation. 

The Mechanics' Association and the Me- 
chanics' Institution are two other societies, 
totally distinct from each other, but having 
also the advancement of knowledge for their 
aim. The first-mentioned is the oldest of its 
kind in Boston, composed exclusively of 
masters. Lectures are delivered here weekly 
in the winter season, and alms distributed 
with a liberal hand to distressed fellow-me- 
chanics. The other, again, is accessible to 
all classes of mechanics ; lectures are here 
also delivered. It possesses a small collection 
of implements suitable for the different wants 
of the members. 


The Association of Mechanics' Appren- 
tices is one of the most remarkable institu- 
tions in the city. Apprentices here deUver 
lectures every week, which, at times, are so 
sensible and well turned that they would not 
disgrace even literary men. A speech, made 
by one of these individuals, at a late annual 
meeting, actually breathed, in some places, 
strains of eloquence and poetry. Young- 
members, whose means do not permit the ex- 
pence of an education, may here receive it 
gratis. A library, by no means inconsider- 
able, belongs to the institution, to which a 
collection of natural and mechanical curi- 
osities has lately been added. 

The Society for the Propagation of Useful 
Knowledge also originated in Boston. It 
has already published several works under 
the name of " American Miscellanies of Use- 
ful Knowledge," which answers the purpose 
remarkably well. The publications are sold 
at a very cheap rate, and contain information 
of great public utility. It would be a desi- 
deratum, indeed, if every city in the world 
could boast of a similar society. The march 
of intellect would then rapidly advance : 
slaves, now sunk into an abject state of igno- 
rance and degradation, groaning under the 


yoke of tyranny and oppression, would then 
no longer bear the delusive quiet of their 
dungeons, but endeavour to shake off the 
fetters. Reflection is the natural offspring of 
an enlightened mind. It engenders a desire 
to recover rights inherent in man. Passive- 
ness of thought gives way to a more active 
development of the faculties. The bonds of 
subserviency are gradually broken asunder ; 
and the mind, once unshackled, breathes 
anew a pure and free atmosphere. Thus it 
is that an intellectual effort, sooner than 
violent and reprehensible measures, slowly, 
but with more certainty, prepares the attain- 
ment of an object of vital importance to the 
human heart — public and private liberty all 
over the world. 

The Young Men's Association for the Pro- 
pagation of Science and Literature ; The 
Young Men's Benevolent Society; The 
Young Men's Society for Intellectual and 
Moral Exercises ; The Young Men's (of the 
Baptist sect) Education Society: — these are 
the names of four of the principal societies 
created by the young men of Boston. The 
two first have already effected much good in 
their particular branches. The third was 
only formed a few months ago ; it has an 


excellent collection of books, and several con- 
venient saloons, where members, as vs^ell as 
strangers, have frequent opportunities of 
forming' many interesting acquaintances, en- 
joying good company, and, at the same time, 
improving their minds by useful books and 
general conversation. The fourth is chiefly 
intended to form able clergymen, the great 
scarcity of whom is severely felt by the com- 
munity. It would be no easy matter to ima- 
gine, at a distance, the indefatigable zeal dis- 
played by this as well as by every other sect 
in the pursuit of its object. I know persons, 
particularly in Massachusetts (which may be 
called the school for the education system, 
now spreading all over the world), who sacri- 
fice time, repose, and property, for the suc- 
cess of the good cause. Not content with 
labouring for their own country — offering, 
no doubt, a sufficient field for their exertions 
— they extend their liberal views to Asia, 
Africa, and Europe. At Burmah, at Siam, at 
the different African settlements, in many of 
the European States even, their missionaries 
are invariably found, whose education has 
been properly and carefully attended to be- 
fore they were sent on their remote expedi- 

VOL. I. M 


Societies of this description are annually 
increasing in the Northern States of the 
Union ; and the friends of religion fondly 
anticipate the time when the true Gospel 
shall be promulgated in the North as well as 
the South, by such men only as possess intel- 
lectual capacity for preaching the commands 
of the Almighty. 

Among the associations in Boston remark- 
able in their kind is that of the Peace So- 
ciety ; it has many adherents in the country. 
Its object is to inculcate a general aversion to 
war, as perfectly irreconcileable with the 
principles of the Christian faith. " War is an 
immoral pursuit," said one of the members of 
the Society to me ; '' for the doctrine of the 
Redeemer was mildness, and effusion of blood 
and murder were foreign to him. War is 
even unnecessary, and history proves it. 
Does victory always crown a just cause? or 
success compensate for the blood spilt — for 
the hatred excited in the vanquished — or for 
that vindictive feeling which lies dormant, 
and only ceases with life ? Envy, misrepre- 
sentation, and, above all, personal considera- 
tions, too often engender hostilities. Ambi- 
tion and revenge not unfrequently induce a 
chief to launch the firebrand among millions ; 


and these, to show their subserviency, cut 
down and murder each other. For these 
acts of wantonness, so revolting to humanity, 
they are rewarded, acquire renown, and an 
immortal name. 

*' Christianity and philanthropy show us, 
however, that one nation seldom thrives on 
the ruins of another ; that the prosperity of 
our neighbour invariably operates beneficially 
on our own. Could not a better tribunal be 
found, for the settlement of differences be- 
tween nations, than an appeal to arms ? Is 
there not enough of misery, disease, and 
trouble in the world ? Whichever way we 
turn, do we hear of anything but misfortunes 
and acts of violence? To remedy these 
ought to be the real field for the exercise of 
true and meritorious heroism. To improve 
mankind, and lighten the sum of misery, this 
is the only glory worthy of man. Patience, 
self-denial, courage, and reason, are qualities 
not less required on the field of benevolence 
than on that of battle. Divest poetical de- 
scriptions of heroic deeds, so enchanting to 
our youthful ears, of their exaggerated and 
lofty garb, and substitute the form of simple 
truth, and the brilliancy of warlike achieve- 
ments will soon vanish before our too blinded 

M 2 


imagination. But if, after all, the doctrine 
should still prevail that war is indispensable, 
then the formation of Peace Societies become 
the more important, to proclaim to the world 
the absolute necessity of a Christian love for 

*' Oh ! could I but live to see the day when 
my beloved country, ruled by principles of 
peace and justice, and relying* entirely on the 
protection of the Almighty, shall relinquish 
the idea of threatening the world with her 
fleets !" 

Besides the institutions just mentioned, 
there are the Massachusetts' Public Hospital, 
the Lunatic Asylum, the State Prison in 
Charlestown, Day and Sunday Schools, all 
deserving the attention of strangers. 

According to the information I received on 
the spot, the number of young men wholly 
devoted to study in Massachusetts, and whose 
age varied from fifteen to twenty, amounted 
to twenty-four thousand eight hundred and 
fifty. In the city of Boston alone, there were, 
in the year 1833, no less than three thousand 
three hundred and fifty children educated at 
the public expencc. The charges are defrayed 
by the State, and amounted, in the year 1832, 
to fifty-six thousand nine hundred and forty- 


seven dollars, forty-one cents. It often hap- 
pens that, after all current expences are paid, 
a surplus arises out of the taxes raised. 
Whenever this occurs, this sum is applied to 
the building of new schools, or to improving 
the old. This surplus has, upon several oc- 
casions, exceeded forty thousand dollars a 

Independently of the children just stated, 
the Sunday Schools also educate a large pro- 
portion, who are all instructed in the Christian 
faith. The latter establishments have of late 
been very successful in this State, as well as in 
various parts of the Union, and may be called 
the religious Lancasterian system. One of 
these Sunday Schools, the members of which 
belong to the sect of Baptists, whose head- 
quarters are in Boston, had, in the year 
1832, one hundred and forty-four schools, in 
which thirteen thousand one hundred and 
twenty young children were instructed by 
one thousand seven hundred and nineteen 


America, it is well known, has no established 
religion. Fugitive pilgrims, persecuted in 
England for their religious opinions, sought 
in the New World that liberty of conscience 
which was denied them in the Old. Every 


opinion of the Deity was here unshackled. 
Religion was considered the exclusive pro- 
perty of conscience and God, and exempt 
from all other constraint. The State was 
distinct from the Church : neither had a right 
to interfere with the other, except to protect 
individuals in the quiet exercise of the creed 
which they conceived to be the only true one. 
Even the clergy was in most of the constitu- 
tions of the States by particular clauses ex- 
cluded from all participation in public affairs. 
Thus one of the most important and eventful 
experiments, ever attempted upon so exten- 
sive a scale, was made, namely, whether 
religion may be sustained in a country with- 
out the protection or support of the Govern- 
ment. The period elapsed since the creation 
of the Republic certainly speaks in favour of 
its practicability : how far the experience of 
future times will justify it I do not venture 
to anticipate. 

This freedom of religion has, however, been 
the means of forming a great many sects, the 
names of which, as well as their varied pro- 
fessions, it is no easy matter to enumerate. 
The difference in many is but trifling, and 
only perceptible in exterior forms. A great 
number arc solely distinguished by insignifi- 


cant modifications of the same creed. When 
a young clergyman, for instance, commences 
his career, to gain importance and make pro- 
selytes, he generally pretends to deviate from 
the other followers in the observance of some 
unmeaning exterior form, without, however, 
rejecting the fundamental principles upon 
which the sect is founded. His friends then 
lose no time in building a church for him. 
The adherents now meet to listen to the new 
preacher, and in a short time his congrega- 
tion becomes so considerable that he obtains 
a comfortable livelihood by it. 

The distinction between all these sects may 
be classed as follows : 

1st. Difference of opinion with regard to the Redeemer. 
2nd. Difference of opinion of the clemency of God. 
3rd. Difference of opinion as to the forms of worship. 

To the first class belong the Unitarians, 
to the second the Calvinists and others, to the 
third the Catholics, and a great many more. 
But, though few men agree in opinion as to 
the creed, yet it is easily discovered that the 
basis is the same with every one. As the 
common name of these sects is Christians, in 
like manner their different opinions coin- 
cide that there exists a Supreme Being, 
through whose infinite goodness the world is 


ruled and supported, and whom we must 
worship — that Christ was the Messiah al- 
luded to in the Old Testament — that resur- 
rection will take place — and that virtue and 
vice will, in a future state, receive their re- 
spective rewards and punishments. This 
bond of union, equally powerful in America 
as in Europe, which keeps together the pro- 
saic Unitarians and the superstitious Catho- 
lics — although otherwise so widely different 
in their belief — does it not, I ask, establish 
the expediency of a general and free doctrine 
all over the world ? Why should not a Lu- 
theran be allowed to worship his Creator in 
the manner he conceives the most proper, in a 
country where perhaps the number of Catho- 
lics is greater than that of Protestants, and 
vice versa? Are not both Christians ? Can 
there be any difference before the throne of 
the Almighty between a follower of the Pope, 
who offers his prayers in a kneeling posture, 
and a Protestant, who performs the same holy 
office standing? Is it not enough that he is 
a pious man? What more do we want to 
know ? 

The Calvinists have the greatest number of 
adherents in the United States. Next to 
them come the Methodists, Presbyterians, 


Orthodox Congregation alists, Catholics, and 
followers of the Episcopal Church. In the New 
England States, the Congregationalists and the 
Presbyterians are the most numerous : but in 
the State of New York, the Presbyterians, Con- 
gregationalists, and Methodists, take the lead. 
In New Jersey and Delaware, the Presbyte- 
rians are the most numerous : in Pennsylvania 
they are also first ; and then follow the Cal- 
vinists, Lutherans, and Quakers. In Mary- 
land, Florida, and Louisiana, there are mostly 
Catholics : in Virginia, North and South Ca- 
rolina, Baptists, Presbyterians, Episcopalians, 
and Methodists: in Georgia, Baptists and 
Methodists : in the Western States, the Me- 
thodists stand foremost, and are estimated at 
eight hundred thousand ; next to them, follow 
the Baptists, seven hundred thousand ; Pres- 
byterians, five hundred and fifty thousand; 
Catholics, four hundred and fifty thousand ; 
and so on.'* 

I was fortunate enough to procure an ap- 
proximating statement of all the different sects 
in the United States, which I hereby annex 
for the information of the reader. 

• Vide History and Geography of the Mississippi Valley, by 







1 . 

§ ^ 








Free-will Baptists . 




Free Communion Baptists 



Seventh-day Baptists 




Six-Principle Baptists 




Emancipator Baptists 



Methodists of the Episcopal Church 



Various Associations of Methodists 



Presbyterians (General Assembly) 




Cumberland's Presbyterians . 




Various Associations of Presbyterians 




Congreojationalists, Orthodox 








Catholics .... 



Followers of the Episcopal Church 












German Reformed Church 




Dutch Reformed Church 








Quakers, or Friends 






Tunkers, or Dunkers . 




Moravians, or United Brethren 












Jews, and other Nondescript Sects 



To enter into an analysis, and distinguish 
the difference between each of these sects, 
would be a task which my limits do not per- 
mit ; I will therefore only succinctly touch on 
the principal ones. The Baptists, more nume- 
rous than the others, deserve the first place. 
Their doctrine is founded on the belief that 
baptism ought not only to consist in the act 
of sprinkling holy water, but to dip also the 


whole body in it, and further, that baptism 
should only be performed on full grown per- 
sons, and exclusively on those who sincerely 
confess and repent their trespasses, and are 
worthy of being admitted brethren of the 
Union. The Calvinist-Baptists believe en- 
tirely in predestination, and affirm that, by 
his sufferings and death, the Redeemer 
washed out the sins of those only who were 
chosen. But though differing in some trifling 
points with each other, they agree upon one 
important principle, equally desirable to all, 
namely, the propagation of the beneficial light 
of the Gospel. Their missionaries are every 
where to be found. In the remotest parts of 
the United States — in those regions where 
no white man ever dared to penetrate among 
the buffalo-hunting Indians — in Liberia (the 
new founded settlement on the coast of Africa 
of emancipated Negroes from America,) in the 
midst of the heathens of Burmah and Siam — 
even in enlightened France — these mission- 
aries are to be found, establishing schools. 
It redounds not a little to the honour of the 
Baptists that they do not lose sight of the 
offspring of the unhappy beings whose ex- 
termination has been nearly effected by too 
close a connexion with the Whites. 


" It is with deep regret we find," observe 
the members of the committee appointed in 
the year 1832, in speaking of the Indian Mis- 
sionaries, in the seventh triennial meeting of 
the general congregation of Baptists at New 
York, " that the mass of Indians are unce- 
remoniously swept away by the tide of de- 
struction. Deprived of the inheritance of 
their ancestors, driven from their last asylum, 
obstructed in the exercise of their craft, hum- 
bled by irksome dependence, despised by 
neighbours, and wounded to the quick by a 
series of unjust acts, all chances of relief are 
obscured before their eyes ; and they sink 
into a state of despondency, the natural con- 
sequence of a distracted mind. Let us not for- 
get that this Indian race are our neighbours, 
and that their population once amounted 
to millions, when left in peaceable possession 
of the country we now inhabit. Their 
number has sensibly diminished by emi- 
grants settled among them, indifferent as to 
their temporal or spiritual welfare. Should 
we not incur the just wrath of Heaven, if we 
abandoned them at this critical moment? 
We rejoice to think that the efforts of the 
missionaries may hereafter be productive of 
some permanent relief to our Indian brethren. 


Already a great number have removed be- 
hind the shores of the Missouri — there is a 
w^ide field indeed for the missionaries !" 

The zeal with which these persevering* men 
labour for the success of their good cause is 
almost incredible. No pains, no obstacles, no 
maladies, can possibly dissuade them from ex- 
posing their persons to the dangers incidental 
among savages, or to the almost certain 
sacrifice of life in the unhealthy climate of 
India, whence few missionaries ever return 
to their native soil. This premature disso- 
lution does not, however, discourage a single 
individual from proceeding on his praise- 
worthy pursuit. They hardly perceive the 
destructive effect of an Indian sun till death 
has marked them for his own. Fearlessly they 
traverse the sandy deserts of Africa, and ne- 
ver quit the improving and flourishing Negro 
colony in Liberia, till they have inculcated 
Christianity among the inhabitants. 

But no project on the part of the mission- 
aries attracted more attention in America 
than that of sending agents to France. No- 
thing showed more clearly the religious enthu- 
siasm which inspires the sect. A few ex- 
tracts from a speech delivered by one of the 
most eloquent and active men among the Bap- 


tists will not, I think, be unacceptable to the 
reader, as showing an attempt to prove the 
necessity of a similar step. " France," it 
says, " is in great want of missionaries. 
Christianity is there nearly extinguished. The 
sacredness of the Sabbath is abolished. Nei- 
ther religious instruction nor devotion is to 
be found. The king reviews his troops; ap- 
prentices and artisans attend to their every- 
day business ; the theatres are crowded with 
people ; Charlatans continue their harvest 
among the credulous; the sounds of music are 
heard from every hotel ; and the whole coun- 
try is nothing but a scene of vice and profa- 
nation. Now is the time for us to act; every 
thing is ready ; the Holy Bible is there acces- 
sible. France, once restored to religious 
sentiments, will, by the propagation of holy 
books, set a fine example to surrounding na- 
tions in Europe, and richly and nobly not 
only provide for herself, but enlist faithful 
servants in her cause. We, more than any 
other Christian nation, are bound to remem- 
ber France in this awful crisis. Need I 
advert to the assistance she tendered our an- 
cestors in time of need? Let us repay this 
loan of fleets and armies by sending her the 
Holy Gospel ! The example of our democrats 


has shaken every throne. We have shown 
to the world the errors of governments and 
the rights of nations. We have disturbed 
all Europe. The contest shall not cease in 
France, nor shall our matchless institutions 
obtain any stability there, till the moral cha- 
racter of the people has been entirely reno- 
vated. Great misfortunes and changes must 
inevitably continue, blood be shed, anarchy 
triumph, till principles of virtue and truth 
preponderate. The people must be taught to 
obey, and taught to command. All this can 
only be effected by the Christian faith." 

The sect of Baptists gained, in the year 
1832, an accession of about fifty thousand 
members. During the same period, four hun- 
dred and thirty-eight new congregations were 
formed, and two hundred and nineteen new 
clergymen ordained, being at the rate of one 
preacher to two congregations : from the whole 
number of both, all over the United States, an 
aggregate of three of the latter to four and a 
half of the former appears. In the States east 
of the Alleghany Mountains, the proportion is 
about two preachers to three congregations: 
in the western again one to two. This is, in 
truth, a lamentable circumstance ; but, as the 
subject now seriously occupies the attention 


of all Baptist associations, it is to be hoped 
that, in the course of time, a sufficient number 
of clergymen will be supplied. Societies are 
also formed for the specific object of giving a 
suitable education to young persons intend- 
ing to devote their time to the promotion of 
missionary pursuits, affording the needy every 
possible support and assistance. The nine- 
teenth annual report of the Northern Bap- 
tists' Education Society states as follows : 

*' Hitherto, little attention has been paid to 
the education of our clergymen. It is a noto- 
rious and lamentable fact, that barely one in 
fifty of our preachers has received the first 
rudiments of an English education. Most of 
them have been taken from the class of farmers 
or agriculturists, and have always been distin- 
guished for piety and good practical common 
sense. Considered as preachers, they have been 
honest and laborious, many even gifted with 
extraordinary natural endowments, which, 
if cultivated, might have paved the way to 
the highest distinctions. Agriculturists are 
always the first to advance in a new country, 
till they are dispersed over the whole sur- 
face: such was also the case with our priests. 
As culture and refinement progressively ad- 
vanced, so they gradually quitted their pris- 


tine abodes, and the consequence was, that 
they accompanied the great mass of people 
which emigrated to regions as yet uninha- 
bited. This explains why Baptists are so 
dispersed all over the country. The country 
having undergone a complete change, the 
illiterate clergy have lost all prospect of suc- 
cess. Knowledge and improvements have 
made great progress : the nation participates 
in the general prosperity. Regions in the 
country, which a few years ago were but 
deserts, have now sprung up into villages and 
towns, which are the seat of wealth, know- 
ledge, and cultivated taste ; to retrograde is 
therefore impossible. One alternative is now 
left — either to give our clergymen a better 
education, or to abandon the field to others. 
The utmost attention is paid to accomplish 
the first object, by the care displayed in form- 
ing able preachers. Theological institutions 
are maintained at their expense, and the 
qualifications required from each clergyman 
not inconsiderable. '' We shall soon be able," 
said one of the followers of this sect to me, 
" to send a whole phalanx of preachers all 
over the world." 

As Philadelphia may be called the Capital 
of the Quakers in America, and Baltimore 

VOL. I. j^ 


that of the Catholics, so may also Boston be 
ranked as the seat of the Unitarians. The 
principles of this last mentioned sect deserve, 
in justice, the name of *' Liberal Religion!" 
Reason and conscience are, according to the 
tenets of its adherents, the only true guide 
through life. They believe nothing which is 
not clearly seen and demonstrated ; miracles 
are rejected as incomprehensible ; there is no 
enthusiasm among them ; their doctrine is 
always confined to plain prosaic expressions : 
lofty poetry — that strain of figurative lan- 
guage, which for centuries past has made so 
many millions of martyrs — is entirely ex- 
cluded. No axiom is more applicable to the 
pensive, serious, and scrutinizing inhabitant 
of the New England States than this : "What 
I do not understand, 1 reject as worthless 
and false." So said one of the most learned 
men in Boston to me — "Why occupy the 
mind with what is incomprehensible ? Have 
we not enough of that which appears clear 
and plain around us?" 

The followers of Unitarianism contend 
that like every thing else in the world, 
religion is exposed to changes and vicissi- 
tudes. The Christian faith — such as preached 
by the apostles — was suited for that parti- 


cular age. In the ages that followed, it was 
not preserved in its pristine purity. One 
addition after another, and one alteration 
worse than the other, soon converted it into a 
convenient engine for disguising crimes of 
every kind. The reformation in Germany 
undoubtedly unravelled the holy truth from 
its dark recesses ; but the purification did not 
go so far as the real friends of the Christian 
faith had wished. Darkness still remained. 
It was then Unitarianism sprung up, and 
all was light. 

Those who profess the tenets of this sect 
do not believe in the Trinity : they contend 
that Christ was a great prophet, but had no 
divine inspiration. Repentance and an un- 
impeachable life, they say, are sufficient to 
obtain God's forgiveness. The martyrdom 
of Christ did not make God better disposed 
towards us than he was before. He only 
requires a true repentance from the sinner, 
and he forgives the past. 

The greater part of the Bostonians, includ- 
ing every one of wealth, talents, and learn- 
ing, have adopted this doctrine. I had fre- 
quent opportunities of hearing their principal 
preachers. Generally speaking, they possessed 
much dignity, both in delivery and action, 

N 2 


explaining the discourse in a simple, conver- 
sation-like manner. Metaphors or poetical 
allusions were never introduced. The ser- 
mon, from beginning to end, appeared to me 
as a conversation in a room between a father 
and his children. The service in other re- 
spects differed very little from that of the 
Episcopal Church, but it was considerably 


Les Revenants et les Sorciers plaisent au peup^, comme aux 
liommes eclaires ; c'est une disposition qu' inspirent assez naturelle- 
ment les loiigues nuits des climats septentrionaux 

De Stael Holstein. 

Having spent a few weeks most agreeably 
in Boston, I proceeded on my journey to the 
other States situated still more to the north- 

Charlestown, the first place I visited, is 
contiguous to Boston, and connected with 
it by means of two long bridges. It is a 
small town of little note, distinguished only 
as being one of the naval stations of the 
United States. One of the officers belonging 
to this service, remarkable for his politeness, 
accompanied me on my visit to view the 
station. It is far from being completed : even 
the plan of the proposed basin was very little 
advanced ; but workmen were actively em- 
ployed in constructing and widening the 
place. Among the finished parts may be 


mentioned the residence of the commodore, 
the barracks, stores, and forges. A spacious 
dock, without exception the finest and largest 
in the United States, was then being' con- 
structed when I visited Charlestown the first 
time. Before I left the States, this stupendous 
work was already completed. The dock, 
built of granite, is finished in a style that 
reflects the greatest credit on the builder ; it 
is two hundred and ten feet in length, and 
roomy enough for the largest battle ship. 
The water is pumped out by a steam-engine. 
Two gates, of which one is floating, arrest the 
influx of the sea. The stonework alone is 
stated to have consisted of no less than five 
hundred thousand cubic feet. 

Several men-of-war, frigates, and sloops, 
were lying there dismantled, and partly 
covered by houses or sheds erected for that 
purpose. All the ships are built of live oak, 
or quercus sempervirens, which grows in the 
Southern States. This building material is 
well known as being particularly hard, com- 
pact, and durable, and, consequently well 
calculated for the construction of ships. 

Among the vessels shown to me was one 
whose fame had already reached my ears, 
and with which every one in America, old 


and young, is acquainted. This was the 
Constitution, a frigate of forty-four guns. 
She is one of the oldest ships in the American 
navy, was built in Boston, in the year 1797, 
and has upon various occasions showed her 
prowess in combating the English and the Tri- 
politans. Fortune has every where favoured 
her : not only has she escaped from far 
superior enemies, but has been victorious in 
several rencontres, capturing frigates, cor- 
vettes, and sloops of war, and carrying home 
a number of prisoners. For these repeated 
deeds of valour, she was called by the ho- 
nourable name, " Old Ironside," by which she 
is distinguished to this very day. She is the 
pride and boast of Americans, particularly of 
the Bostonians, with whom she is a darling- 
object. Few men-of-war have done more than 
this ship. Whenever Old Ironside proceeds 
to sea, all eyes are fixed upon her, confident 
that she will give a good account of herself: 
on returning, she is enthusiastically greeted 
by the whole nation. 

At one extremity of Charlestown, there are 
two hills, called Breed's Hill and Bunker's 
Hill, known in history as the spots where one 
of the battles was fought during the revolu- 
tionary war, in which the Americans were 

184 bunker's hill — lynn. 

obliged to give way. This took place in the 
year 1775, and has, strange enough, been 
called the battle of Bunker's Hill, although, 
properly speaking, it ought to have gone by 
the name of Breed's Hill, where the fight 
actually took place. Fifty years subsequently 
to this event, or in the year 1825, in the pre- 
sence of General Lafayette and a number of 
revolutionary officers and soldiers, the foun- 
dation-stone was laid for a granite monument 
in the shape of an obelisk. The work, how- 
ever, went on but slowly, and even in 1833 it 
was far from being completed. 

The distance from Charles town to Lynn is 
only a few miles. This little town, one of the 
oldest in the Union, has a population ex- 
clusively devoted to the manufacturing of 
shoes. Of six thousand inhabitants, one 
fourth may be said to be shoemakers. Some 
of the masters employ fifty workmen, and it 
was reported that one of them could turn out 
twelve hundred pair a week, being, if we 
take twelve hours in the day, at the rate of 
one pair of shoes for every fourth minute. 
The annual quantity of boots and shoes 
manufactured at this place amounts to a 
million, the greater part of which are disposed 
of in the Southern States. Contracts are 

SALEM. 185 

generally made beforehand with the manu- 
facturers. In every house in the town, with 
a few exceptions, w^orkshops are to be seen, 
and the eye meets nothing but shoemakers at 
their last. This is truly carrying on the shoe- 
making business to a great extent. 

Salem, also one of the oldest towns in 
America, was founded in the year 1626, and 
bore formerly the Indian name of Naumkeag. 
It contended a long time for commercial 
supremacy with Boston, but was at length 
obliged to yield the palm to its too powerful 
neighbour. Trade and navigation have of 
late years visibly decreased, and many of the 
principal inhabitants have in consequence re- 
tired from business, while some have removed 
to Boston. Much Avealth is still to be found 
in Salem, of which the exterior appearance 
gives at first sight a good idea. The houses 
are tastefully and ornamentally built. The 
streets are rather narrow, but a stranger is so 
pre-occupied with the justly celebrated female 
beauties of the place as to have no leisure for 
finding fault with the architectural part of 
the town. 

Salem possesses a museum, the most inter- 
esting of its kind in the United States. It 
belongs to a society, of which no one can 


become a member till he has doubled Cape 
Horn or the Cape of Good Hope. From every 
part of the world curiosities, antiquities, and 
costumes, together with other remarkable 
things, are brought hither, interesting to the 
antiquarian as well as to the naturalist. No 
traveller ought to quit this part of the country 
without visiting the museum of Salem. 

Close to the town is Beverley, a small in- 
significant place, remarkable only in the 
annals of history, as having formerly con- 
tained a superstitious population. Many 
lives have here been sacrificed ; and the 
barren hill is still in existence, where persons 
accused of witchcraft were hung up on tall 
trees. Tradition, exaggerated and fabulous 
no doubt, points out the place where the 
witches of old resided. Cotton Mather re- 
counts in a work,* truly original for that age, 
that the good people who lived near Mas- 
sachusett's Bay were every night roused 
from their slumber by the sound of a trumpet, 
summoning all the witches and demons. 

And there that night the trumpet rang. 

And rock and liill repHed, 
And down the glen strange shadows sprang. 
Mortal and fiend — a wizard gang. 

Seen dimly side by side. 

* Magnalia, by Cotton Mather. 


They gathered there from every land 

That sleepeth in the sun ; 
They came with spell and charm in hand. 
Waiting their Master's high command, 

Slaves to the Evil One !* 

Newbury Port is a town which has seen 
its best days : it is now sunk into insigni- 
ficance. It is situated near the Merrimac, one 
of the many beautiful rivers which traverse 
the immense continent of North America. 
The port is good, but deserted and empty. 
Within ten years, the bustle and trade have 
considerably decreased : mackarel-fishing ap- 
pears to give exclusive support to a declining 
population. The exterior of the town, the 
houses, and streets, bespeak its decline. 

On leaving this place, and proceeding by 
the suspension-bridge, built on four arches, 
and one thousand feet in length, the traveller 
enters the territory of New Hampshire. In 
this State are the celebrated White Moun- 
tains, the highest in the United States, with 
the exception of the Rocky Mountains. Among 
them, Mount Washington rises highest : its 
summit is five tliousand three hundred and 
fifty feet above the level of Connecticut river, 
or about six thousand four hundred feet above 
that of the sea. Besides these mountains, 

• Legends of New England. 


there are several others traversing the State 
in various directions, interspersed with rich 
pasturage. Along the coast, nothing but 
stones, sand, and sterility, is seen ; but in the 
interior the soil is more fertile, and in many 
places covered with extensive woods. The 
climate is healthy, though cold. Concord, 
the capital, is situate in the middle of the 
State, on the River Merrimac. 

Portsmouth is the most considerable town 
in New Hampshire, and the only sea-port. It 
is watered by the river Piscataqua, forming 
one of the safest harbours in the Union. The 
environs are embellished by neat country- 
seats ; but the town itself has nothing striking. 
It has suffered considerably by frequent fires, 
and, as its trade has been visibly on the de- 
cline, no pains have been taken to rebuild the 
houses. The old town, which has hitherto 
escaped the effects of conflagrations, has such 
a wretched appearance that the spectator 
fancies himself removed to some small Euro- 
pean hamlet, just emerged from the horrors of 
war, pestilence, or persecution. In the midst 
of these ruins, however, I found a standard of 
liberty, on the top of which a gilt eagle 
spread its wide wings ; beneath it, was 
written, in large characters, that it was erected 


for the celebration of the 4th of July, the day 
on which America declared her independence. 

On a small island opposite Portsmouth is 
another station for the United States Navy, 
enclosing several ships. 

When the traveller leaves the river Pisca- 
taqua, he enters the State of Maine : before 
1820, it formed part of Massachusetts. Every 
step indicates an approach to the North : cul- 
tivated fields become more rare, the soil ap- 
pears less yielding', forests increase, the pine 
— this child of the North — assumes its em- 
pire, the neat cottages so conspicuous in the 
New England States disappear. The whole 
country has a Northern appearance ; and the 
inhabitants, with their golden locks and rosy 
cheeks, forcibly reminded me of my own far 
remote but much-beloved country. During 
several months in the year, the rivers and 
lakes are covered with ice, as in Sweden : 
forests lie under the weight of snow-moun- 
tains : fields, rocks, valleys, all are dressed 
in the white winter mantle. I fancied I 
recognised the heavy clouds, the fresh air ; 
that I heard the sound of the sleigh bells ; 
and I pictured to myself all the pleasures 
of a winter's evening, with snow on the 
ground, and dancing, and singing, and toast- 


ing, within doors. Such were the illusions of 
my fancy, entirely bent on Sweden, when first 
I entered Maine. 

In the course of this day's journey, I passed 
through the small towns of York, Welles, 
Kennebunk, and Saco. The road was very 
indifferent, and the country generally bore 
the appearance of sterility and uniformity. 
Several manufactories are established near 
Saco. Not far from Welles is a rock called 
Breakneck Hill, forming a cataract forty 
feet high. According to tradition, a great 
number of Indians met here a melancholy 
fate. They were returning from a fishing 
excursion to the upper part of the river. 
Surprised by darkness before they arrived at 
the falls, they despatched a small party to 
make up a fire on the very rock which divides 
the cataract, intending thereby to guard 
against danger. Some Whites residing in the 
neighbourhood having obtained information 
of their intention, killed the party thus sent. 
Combustibles of every description were has- 
tily collected, and a fire lighted on one of the 
banks below the falls. The Indians, in full 
reliance on their comrades, did not perceive 
the stratagem till it was too late to arrest the 
progress of their boats. All were precipi- 


tated down the falls in an instant, and pe- 
rished by the side of each other, in a common 

It is not surprising- if these and similar 
barbarities inspired a deadly hatred and a 
thirst for vengeance. It was probably under 
this influence that five hundred Indians are 
stated to have attacked a small redoubt, 
situate a short distance from thence, and of 
which some traces are still left. No white 
men happened to be in the redoubt when 
assailed : five women formed the only gar- 
rison. These determined to defend them- 
selves, and to sell their lives dearly. Disguised 
in the attire of men, they fired on the enemy 
with so much effect that the Indians at 
length raised the siege and fled. 

Every stranger visiting the New England 
States is struck with a prominent feature, 
characteristic of the inhabitants — namely, 
that of curiosity. All must positively know 
their neighbours' business. To elude answer- 
ing inquiries is nearly the same as holding 
the questioner over a slow fire. He suffers 
more than a snake in an ant-hill, if the follow- 
ing questions are not immediately answered : 
" Who are you ? Where do you come from ? 
W^here are you going ? What is your busi- 


ness ?" &c. The ^reat Franklin was well 
acquainted with this characteristic, and was 
therefore in the habit, whenever he proceeded 
to the eastward, and arrived at a place, to 
call together all the inmates of the house 
where he stopped, and tell them that his 
name was Benjamin Franklin, that he came 
from such and such a place, that he intend- 
ed to go to another, that the object of his 
journey was so and so, and, finally, that he 
intended to return by such and such a route. 
This was an excellent way to prevent ques- 
tions, and always insured him tranquillity. 
When travelling in a stage coach, nothing is 
more common than for one traveller to ask 
another the history of his life, and it is hardly 
possible to evade answering without incur- 
ring the displeasure of the whole company. 

Our coach contained no less than nine in- 
side passengers, travelling all the way from 
Portsmouth to Portland ; before we had pro- 
ceeded one-eighth part of the journey, we 
knew each other as well as if we had been 
educated in the same college. Inquiries were 
not limited to a mere personal biography : 
grandmothers, uncles, cousins, and aunts, 
were respectively brought into ])lay, seasoned 
with appropriate anecdotes and comments. 


Each narrative was always accompanied by 
the eleg-ant expression, " says she," or " says 
he," generally exciting merriment with the 
auditory. To give a faint idea of the latitude 
to which curiosity is carried, I will report a 
short and humourous conversation which 
took place in the course of our journey 
between two gentlemen, immediately upon 
their stepping into the coach. 

A. You come from Boston, I guess ? 

B. I left Boston yesterday. 

A. You live there, I presume? 

B. Not quite. 

A. Perhaps from Cambridge, or Lowell ? 

B. (Did not answer immediately). 

A. Well ! from Lowell. Concerned in some 
manufactory there, I guess ? 

B. Just so. 

A. How do the manufactories come on? 
Do they pay ? 

B. Tolerably well. 

A. You have a large family, haven't you ? 

B. Not without. 

A. Your father was probably also a manu- 
facturer, I reckon ? 

B. Yes ; you are right. 

A. Pardon me, what was his name? 

B. The same as mine. 

VOL. I. o 


A. Gilford, Dickens, or Gorum, perhaps? 

B. No, Sir ; neither of these names. 

A. May I be allowed to ask who I am 
speaking- to ? 

B. My name is 

A. Really ! Well, there was a gentleman of 
that name I knew ten years ago at Plymouth ; 
he must surely have been your brother. Was 
he not ? 

B. No, but probably my cousin. 

A. Cousin ! then you have no brothers ? 

B. Yes, two. 

A. They are also engaged in manufactur- 
ing, I calculate ? 

B. Only one of them. 

A. And the other, what is he doing ? Gone 
into business, I suspect. 

B. He is a farmer. 

A. Has he a large family ? 

B. A considerable one. 

A. He must have a large farm, many 
sheep, cows, swine, geese, &c. 

The questions and answers were thus inter- 
ruptedly continued for more than half an 
hour, when A had at length exhausted his 
inquiries. B, who, to judge by his laconic 
answers, appeared little pleased with these 
fatiguing questions, now began to repay his 


antagonist in the same coin, and did not leave 
off till A had given him a circumstantial ac- 
count of his whole family, father, grandfather, 
great grandfather, brothers, sisters, cousins, 
and their relations, with anecdotes relating 
to each, together with the particulars of their 
occupation, income, property, &c. When the 
colloquy was concluded, both appeared hear- 
tily tired. I could not refrain from indulging 
in a hearty laugh, and should probably have 
continued it for some time, had not my neigh- 
bour in the coach thought proper to break it 
off, by placing me under examination. At 
length the stage entered Portland. 

This rising town is the seat of the Legisla- 
ture for Maine, and lies on a peninsula, ex- 
tending into Casco Bay. A few handsome 
private and public buildings may be seen ; 
but the streets are neither paved nor Mac- 
adamized, so that, although the summer was 
not yet over, they were in such bad condition, 
that passengers ran the risk of being every 
minute engulphed in a mud-hole. The trade 
of this place is considerable : the active po- 
pulation has particularly directed its atten- 
tion to ship-building, for which it is distin- 
guished. The principal exports hence are 
deal, timber, and fish. An observatory has 


been erected on an eminence at one end of 
the town, from the top of which the prospect is 
very beautiful, and in clear weather the white 
mountains in New Hampshire may be seen. 

One evening, during my short stay at Port- 
land, I met a very well informed and experi- 
enced man, lately returned from a visit to the 
interior of Maine, where he had been examin- 
ing* the soil of some uncultivated and wild 
tracts of land, part of which he intended to 
purchase at an approaching sale, for the pur- 
pose of cultivation. " That portion of land," 
observed he, " which is situate between the 
rivers Penobscot and Kennebec, but particu- 
larly near Augusta and Hallowell, is so well 
cultivated and thickly peopled, that one can 
scarcely f^cy himself in Maine. But, farther 
on in the State, neither the axe nor the plough 
has ever been used. Great treasures are 
still to be found in the immense forests and in 
the maiden soil. The climate is no doubt 
rather severe, and does not offer all the ad- 
vantages of a Southern or Western one ; but 
it is at least healthy, and does not weaken 
the body. In Maine, no emigrant can grow 
in a twelvemonth, but he is sure to do it in 
ten years. Why should it therefore be said, 
that because a man can earn an independence 


in the course of one year in the South or West, 
it would be folly to settle in the North, and 
wait ten ? What is gained in one respect is 
lost in another; for those who, in the first 
mentioned States, accomplish their object in 
one tenth part of the time, generally die ten 
years before those in the North. The emi- 
grant may therefore choose between a short 
and pleasant life, and a long and laborious 
one. For my part, I prefer the latter." 

The expression of these sentiments, which 
at first appeared to me as rather emanating 
from a partial source, induced me, neverthe- 
less, to make further inquiry into the subject. 
Europe sends yearly shoals of emigrants to 
the United States. In the year 1833, there 
arrived at New York forty-one thousand seven 
hundred and fifty-two passengers, of which 
two-thirds may be said to be emigrants : if, 
therefore, we admit the number twenty-seven 
thousand eight hundred and thirty-four, and 
add thereto the same number, which come to 
other ports and from Canada, the aggregate 
sum of emigrants that annually resort to the 
United States will be about fifty-five thousand 
six hundred. Generally speaking, they pos- 
sess a very small sum of money, after paying 
for their passage across the Atlantic, and with 


it they proceed either to the West, South, or 
North, according' to recommendations given by 
individuals they accidentally meet. Those who 
take their chance in the Northern States, such 
as New York, Vermont, New Hampshire, and 
Maine, are for the most part deterred by fear 
of epidemics, pictured to them in the most 
discouraging colours, from visiting the West- 
ern or Southern States, as they are accustomed 
to severe climates. They purchase unculti- 
vated land, either from government or private 
companies, at prices varying from two and a 
half to four dollars per acre : for land already 
cultivated they pay from one hundred to one 
hundred and fifty dollars. Those again, who 
proceed across the Alleghany Mountains, buy 
lots at one and a quarter to two dollars per 
acre : it is land in a virgin state, intersected 
with hills, valleys, and swamps. 

It is certainly an unquestionable fact, that 
land in the *' far West," as it is emphatically 
called, is by far more yielding than that of 
any of the Northern States just mentioned. 
An acre gives there upon an average seventy 
bushels of wheat, or ninety of Indian corn ; 
whereas, in the latter, it only produces half 
that quantity. Thus, the comparative pro- 
duction varies a good deal ; the price of pro- 


duce equally so. The facilities of transporting 
the latter down the large Western rivers to 
great markets materially improve the condi- 
tion of the farmers, by insuring higher prices 
for their commodities : still, the distance and 
loss of time are of such great moment, that 
they are often obliged to submit to heavy de- 
ductions before the net proceeds reach their 
farms. Wood, cut on their premises prepara- 
tory to cultivation, yields nothing : to send it 
down one thousand, perhaps two thousand 
miles, before it becomes of any value, is an 
expense without any corresponding remune- 
ration. But, in the Northern States, particu- 
larly in Maine, this is by no means the case. 
There, it is worth from three to three and a 
half dollars per cord. With the produce of 
the timber, always in demand in the neigh- 
bouring cold States, the prime cost of the 
property is paid. The soil, once cleared, 
generally yields, the first year, from twenty 
to thirty bushels of Indian corn, which, sold on 
the spot, fetches about fifty cents, and if sent 
to Boston, from sixty-five to seventy-five cents. 
This seems to establish the fact, that emigra- 
tion to the Northern States is not so discou- 
raging as has been represented. That it is 
a toilsome task cannot well be denied ; but 


settlers are, at least, exempt from sickness. 
By industry and perseverance, an independ- 
ence may certainly be acquired, but it can 
only be effected in process of time. 

In the Western States, again, emigrants 
have, in the first instance, to defray heavy 
travelling expences, before they arrive at 
their place of destination. They then must 
pay an exorbitant price for agricultural im- 
plements, always high in a distant and thinly- 
peopled country. Unacquainted with the 
climate, they invariably commit acts of im- 
prudence. Destitute of means, whole families 
are obliged, at first, to live in the open air, 
exposed to the miasmas and vapours continu- 
ally arising from the swamps. Diseases, 
often of a malignant nature, follow as a 
natural consequence. Deprived of medical 
assistance, they have to contend with their 
effects, and are at the same time obliged, with 
the sweat on their brows, to work for food ! 
How often does the first year's experiment 
leave the settler a widower, childless, and 
fatherless ! However, this dreadful state of 
sickness will gradually disappear, like a 
shadow, before the influence of civilization. 
As soon as the country becomes inhabited, 
the swamps drained and cultivated, and the 



woods changed into fertile fields, the climate 
will become more healthy, and the emigrant be 
freed from this fearful scourge — sickness and 

The dread of fevers and agues, however, 
prevents many Europeans from settling in the 
woody parts of the Western Countries. In 
the Old World, nothing is more common than 
to hear objections raised against emigrations 
to the United States. The country is repre- 
sented as being the abode of every species of 
disease. By degrees, this erroneous impres- 
sion will be removed. Encouraging state- 
ments, I have no doubt, will be transmitted 
by Europeans, enjoying comforts and health 
in their new settlements ; and the day will 
come when the children of emigrants, who 
have gone through the trying ordeal, will be 
exhibited as patterns of health and strength. 

Among numerous objections I remember 
having heard in Europe against the tide of 
emigration, were certain difficulties men- 
tioned as emanating from various States. 
The nature of these, taken in unison with the 
personal risk and trouble inseparable from 
emigration, were, according to the opinion of 
many enlightened men, sufficient grounds for 
the intended exiles rather to remain at 


home in a state of poverty and misery, even 
with slavery and wretchedness as companions, 
than to take the chance of liberty and inde- 
pendence, since neither could be acquired, but 
at the evident risk of life. 

No State, that I am aware of, throws any 
impediment in the w^ay of emigration or colo- 
nization, except Massachusetts. There the 
laws are opposed to an alien holding- land 
until he becomes a naturalized citizen. But, 
notwithstanding this exception, many fo- 
reigners purchase soon after their arrival 
tracts of land in the State. It is done by 
leases, for a period of ninety-nine years, equi- 
valent to an actual purchase, in a country 
where property seldom remains long in the 
hands of one family. Massachusetts is, how- 
ever, a State to which few emigrants resort. 
The land being poor, the major part of the popu- 
lation direct their attention to manufacturing- 
pursuits, or quit for the Western Country. 
In States less populous, such as Maine, New 
Hampshire, Vermont, Ohio, Illinois, Indiana, 
Kentucky, Missouri, Mississippi, &c., the Le- 
gislature gives every possible encouragement 
to emigration. The price of land is very mode- 
rate, and may be bought on credit by mort- 
gaging it. It is, besides, an adopted rule in 


these regions, that, whenever an emigrant 
arrives, for the purpose of settling, the whole 
neighbourhood assembles and assists in rais- 
ing a temporary dwelling for him, that he 
may at least have shelter over his head for 
himself and family. This assistance, indis- 
pensable in a country where no workmen can 
be hired, added to the trifling amount of 
taxes, materially contributes to remove the 
first and greatest difficulties an emigrant has 
to encounter in a wild district. If he possesses 
property to the extent of one hundred dollars, 
he may, by hard labour and industry, the 
first year earn barely enough to support 
himself and family : the second he will do it 
easily ; and the subsequent ones much better 
than he has been used to in Europe. 

I have been assured that if a man proceeds 
to the States just mentioned, with a capital 
of two thousand dollars, he may purchase 
more land and houses than he will be able to 
manage. This sum might therefore be con- 
sidered the maximum in the purchase of land 
in the uncultivated districts. Whoever em- 
barks this amount the first year is looked 
upon as a very wealthy man. This applies 
to the most remote and still thinly-peopled 


The price of beasts of burden, necessary for 
agriculture, varies according to the distance 
of the place from the ocean. Upon an average, 
thirty to forty -five dollars are paid for a cow, 
seventy to eighty for a pair of oxen, and ninety- 
five dollars for a strong working horse. But 
these high prices are not common ; they can 
scarcely be considered as a criterion. 

The principal produce is tobacco, cotton, 
rice, sugar, Indian corn, wheat, and rye. To- 
bacco grows mostly in Virginia, Maryland, 
Kentucky, and Ohio ; cotton in Louisiana, 
Mississippi, Arkansas, Alabama, Tennessee, 
Georgia, South and North Carolina, and Flo- 
rida ; rice, in Carolina and Louisiana ; sugar, 
in Louisiana and Florida ; Indian corn in 
Kentucky, Ohio, Missouri, Illinois, and some 
of the Northern States ; wheat, in Illinois, 
Missouri, and some of the middling States ; 
rye, in the districts north of the River Hudson. 
In the Southern States, cotton, tobacco, 
sugar, and rice, are considered staple articles. 
In the Northern, again, Indian corn and 
wheat take the first place. I will advert to 
the first-mentioned articles in a future chap- 
ter, when speaking of the South. 

The prices of the Northern produce, 
namely, Indian corn, wheat, and rye, are sub- 


ject to great fluctuation in the Eastern or 
Western States, depending more or less on 
the contiguity of markets to the plantations. 
In the principal towns, bordering on the 
Atlantic Ocean, they have upon an average 
been for some time as follows : rye from the 
North from seventy to seventy-five cents per 
bushel ; rye from the South sixty to sixty- 
five cents; wheat, ninety cents to one dollar; 
Indian corn sixty-five to seventy-five cents. 
In the interior, and in the Western States, 
where transport to a market is long and 
difficult, Indian corn has only brought fifteen 
to twenty cents. A great quantity of flour is 
made from wheat in the Central States, from 
Virginia to New York ; the average price 
has, of late years, been six dollars and a half 
per barrel. 

From Portland I returned direct to Boston. 
At an inn on the road, where we changed 
horses, a dancing party had just assembled, 
in honour of the termination of harvest. The 
entertainment, which is called " husking," is 
given by every farmer to his neighbours, who 
have assisted in plucking the ears of the corn- 

The practice of voluntarily helping each 
other during harvest time is common in this 


part of the country, and arises from the 
scarcity of labouring* men all over the Union. 
They cannot be obtained for money in many 
places ; I should say that they are scarce, 
when compared to the great population of the 
country. The reason lies in the very repub- 
lican principle that every one aspires to the 
condition of master, for the purpose of enjoy- 
ing an independent station, easily obtained. 
In the Northern States, exempt from slaver}^ 
the population has increased to so great an 
extent that salaried assistants must be found 
on any terms ; but, the number proving in- 
sufficient, they often demand higher wages. 

In the Slave States, on the contrary, it is 
considered degrading to a white man to do 
any work that might possibly be performed 
by a Negro. As soon as a European, and 
particularly an Irishman, arrives in America, 
he immediately tries to get employment either 
as a servant or an apprentice, driven to it by 
poverty ; but it is almost without example 
that the same man, after having imbibed 
republican notions of equality, ever remains 
beyond a very short time as dependent on 
another, however well he may be treated by 
his master or mistress. His head filled with 
ideas of liberty, and a few dollars in his 


pocket, he starts for some remote part, buys 
a tract of land for a trifle and on credit, cul- 
tivates it, or follows some profession on 
his own account. In the course of a few years 
he grows wealthy, and becomes perhaps in 
time a candidate for one of the highest offices 
in the State. It is not surprising then, that, 
with such prospects before him, a man prefers 
being master to servant ; but, at the same 
time, wages consequently become high. Ma- 
sons, carpenters, and joiners, are as much 
wanted in the country as in towns, owing 
to the number of buildings continually being 
erected. An able workman of that class 
earns at least one dollar per diem, and in 
many places in the country even two dollars 
and a half. A common workman in the 
interior, or what would be called a labourer, 
receives from ten to twelve dollars a month, 
besides board and lodging, &c., this only du- 
ring the summer months : in winter he gets 
less, except in the vicinity of woods, where he 
is employed in cutting and transporting tim- 
ber. An assistant gardener, who is acquainted 
with some other profession, receives about 
fifteen dollars a month. 

I was told that this "husking entertain- 
ment" was a real treat to young people in the 


country. As soon as the Indian corn is cut, 
and safely lodged in the barns, all the neigh- 
bours are invited to attend and pluck the ears. 
This operation is seldom performed without 
much mirth and hilarity, generally enlivened 
by the circulation of some excellent cider. 
When evening approaches, tables are spread 
with abundance of provisions of every descrip- 
tion, and dancing only ceases when Phoebus 
greets the company. In this manner were 
these people engaged when I entered the ball- 
room. There was not a countenance that did 
not express artless joy ; the motion of limbs, 
the clapping of hands, the bending of knees, 
the inclination of heads to follow time, all was 
in harmony with the smiles on the lips and in 
the eyes. Here was a perfect illustration of 
the pleasures of a country life, so happily 
portrayed by poets. Joy reigned without 
ostentation. There, 

Brown corn-fed nymphs, and strong hard-handed beaux. 
Alternate ranged, extend in circling rows. 

But the horses were harnessed, the coach- 
man cracked his whip. Each traveller hur- 
ried to the stage. Thus we left the dancing 
party, and entered Boston on the following 


He who hath loved not, here would learn that love. 

And make his heart a spirit ; he who knows 

That tender mystery, will love the more. 

For this is Love's recess. Byron. 

No city in North America has more beau- 
tiful environs than Boston. One fancies 
himself actually brought back to garden-like 
England. Nature has no doubt vastly con- 
tributed her share ; but the inhabitants of 
the city have also taken an active part in em- 
bellishing these beautiful, and in many places 
romantic, situations. The surrounding country 
is every where hilly and covered with wood. 
Cottages are seen in every direction, giving 
them at once a rural appearance. Woods, 
formerly wild, are now converted into parks, 
and so contiguous that the visiter may walk 
from one to another without perceiving that 
they are divided. Many of these country- 
seats resemble a terrestrial paradise. Those 
in particular situate on the still, elysian lake, 
Jamaica Pond, are the finest I have seen in 

VOL. I. p 


the New World. The lake itself is not very 
extensive ; but its banks, its waters, possess 
something* of so enchanting a character, that 
no stranger has yet been able to contemplate 
either without rapture. Surely, yes, surely, 
its former inhabitants, the Indians, must have 
fancied this the spot of some great Spirit : 
numberless times must they have kneeled 
down on the grassy banks and worshipped 
Him who lived near this abode. " He who 
hath loved not," says Childe Harold's immor- 
tal bard, " here would learn that love ; he who 
knows that tender mystery will love the more, 
for this is Love's recess." This idea may very 
properly be applied to Jamaica Pond. 

I one day visited the new cemetery, planned 
in imitation of that of Pere la Chaise at Pa- 
ris, distant about four miles from Boston. It 
is but lately commenced, but shows already 
what it is likely to be. Situated on Mount 
Auburn, an eminence of which it bears the 
name, this cemetery offers to the view a variety 
of objects seldom witnessed in similar places. 
Hence may be seen hills and dales, rivulets 
and fields, intersected with roads and path- 
ways, named like the streets in a city. And, 
in fact, why should they not be so named? 
What is a cemetery but a town of the dead ? 


It neither wants buildings nor inhabitants : 
the latter are there — but silent. Each step 
we advance in this receptacle of the departed 
reminds us of our equals, slumbering- in re- 
pose in their silent dwellings. Above their 
quarters we see names written in gold. Is 
there no intercourse between those who inha- 
bit this mortal city ? Silence itself! — is it not 
a painful language ? Look at these weeping 
willows, these cypresses — what do they not 
announce? And this flower, but lately planted, 
spreading its fragrance through the air, this 
rattling and crystal-like stream, this plain- 
tive tone of a solitary bird — is not all this a 
language that speaks to the heart? Death 
inspires here no dread : on the contrary, a 
glance at this beautiful cemetery almost excites 
a wish to die. 

From the extremity of this eminence, Bos- 
ton may be seen enveloped, as it were, in a 
dark fog. Neither bustle nor noise is per- 
ceptible. Here stands man alone in the pre- 
sence of his Creator and his conscience. 
Above, nothing impedes the sight of the beau- 
tiful blue sky ; beneath repose a world of equals. 
His eye is raised above the earth, and his 
thoughts are directed to regions where no looks 
have yet been able to penetrate. His breast, 

p 2 


hitherto filled with worldly passions, now 
heaves with sublime and holy feelings. The 
inscription, in bronze characters, at the en- 
trance of this burying-gTound, further reminds 
him that he must himself return to dust. His 
own shadow indicates his insignificance in the 
great universe. The whitened bones scat- 
tered over the ground tell him to what he 
also must come. But he is not deterred : his 
reliance above is strenghtened. In the depth 
of his contemplations he fancies Religion 
whispering to his beating heart in the echo 
of the breeze, or in the thrilling note of the 
bird. He breathes, he fancies, a freer air ; 
he forgets that he is still a wanderer on the 
earth. But, in the midst of these meditations, 
the sun is slowly returning ; his lengthened 
shades melt in the mysterious twilight ; the 
darkness of night covers with her mantle cities 
and fields ; trees are motionless ; flowers 
bend their sleepy heads; birds seek their 
nests ; the serpentine pathways are illumined 
by millions of stars emblazoning the firma- 
ment ; close to the Mausoleum of Genius* 
the evening star is seen in all her splendour. 

•Miss Hannah Adams, authoress of several highly esteemed his- 
torical works. This lady was the first person buried at Mount 
Auburn. She died in December, 1831. 


Approaching- night soon forced me to leave 
this receptacle of the dead. Often did 1 renew 
my visit, and was each time more delighted 
with the spot. It would have been impos- 
sible for the inhabitants of Boston to select a 
more suitable situation for a cemetery. 

It was on the 29th of August that lec- 
tures recommenced at the University of Cam- 
bridge, distant about three miles from Boston. 
This is the oldest and richest academy in 
the United States. The buildings are of 
brick, without any pretension to architec- 
tural beauty, bearing rather a resemblance 
to old barracks. The library, as far as num- 
ber of books is concerned, has not its equal 
in the country : the volumes are computed at 
forty thousand. There is also a collection of 
minerals, but it is rather insignificant. The 
number of students annually resorting to 
this place is about three hundred; they are 
at liberty to reside either in the houses allotted 
by the University, or may take lodgings in 
town. They pay twenty-five cents a-day 
for board, furnished by the institution. The 
usual age at the time of entering is about 
sixteen ; it is then expected they should have 
some knowledge of Latin, Greek, arithmetic, 
geography, and history. Every one has the 


privilege of conforming to the creed he thinks 
best, so that it may be said there is no pre- 
vailing religion at this University. At the 
expiration of four years the academical course 
is supposed to be completed ; the student is 
then examined, and obtains the title of 
" Bachelor of Arts." He now enters active 
life at twenty ; and may, three years after, 
without undergoing any further examination, 
take the degree of "Master of Arts," as it 
is called. I was told, that thirty years ago 
the number of students at this Academy was 
the same as it is now. This appears rather 
strange, considering the increase of popu- 
lation since that period ; but it was explained 
to me in the following manner: — 1st. In 
former times Cambridge was the only Univer- 
sity in the country, whereas, now there are 
several others, among which is one in New- 
haven, attended by five hundred students. 
2nd. An opinion is prevalent, that a boy 
who has been several years at school has 
received a sufficient education, and does not 
require any more ; that, instead of letting him 
proceed at the age of sixteen to the Univer- 
sity to perfect his studies, it is preferable that 
he should learn a profession for his future 



The ceremonies usual at the opening of 
the Academy commenced, at ten o'clock in 
the morning-, by a procession to church, at- 
tended by the president of the University, the 
governor of Massachusetts, the professors, 
students, and strangers, invited upon the 
occasion. The church was already filled 
with spectators, and the upper seats occu- 
pied by ladies. The ceremony commenced 
by a prayer ; after which the president in- 
vited the students, graduated as '' Bachelors 
of Art," to deliver speeches. These orations 
were some in English, some in Greek, some 
in Latin, and all extempore. Each speaker 
had selected his own subject. One of them 
treated of radicalism, in a speech nearly in- 
terminable. Generally speaking, these ora- 
tions were couched in such lofty language, and 
so many metaphors were introduced, that no 
one but the speaker himself could understand 
a word. When those w^io aspired to the higher 
degree of '' Master of Arts" had also gratified 
the audience with endless speeches, the presi- 
dent, with much pomp, delivered their diplo- 
mas to about sixty graduates. A prayer con- 
cluded the ceremony ; and the procession re- 
turaed in the same order to partake of a 
sumptuous dinner, prepared in different sa- 


loons. The whole company consisted of five 
hundred persons. Prayers were read before 
and after the repast ; and at the end a psalm 
was sung. In the evening, the president re- 
ceived visits from all the individuals who had 
attended the ceremony, on which occasion 
both host and hostess displayed the utmost 
courtesy and attention in welcoming strangers. 
At Quincy, a few miles from Boston, John 
Quincy Adams, formerly President of the 
United States, has taken up his residence 
en i^etraite. This veteran statesman quitted 
his office, as First Magistrate of the Re- 
public, in the year 1828, and was replaced 
by General Jackson. He only occupied the 
Presidential Chair for a period of four years, 
or from 1824, having lost his re-election, in 
consequence, as was reported, of a secret 
alliance between him and Clay. The com- 
munity, jealous of its privileges, cried aloud 
against the machinations of the Heir Adams, * 
as he was nick-named, whom they suspected 
had acted contrary to the spirit of the Con- 
stitution ; and this objection was sufficient 
to raise the whole country against him. 

• His father, John Adams, was the only one of the Presidents 
who had ii son. Hence he was called heir totlie Presidential Chair. 



All eyes were now directed to the hero of 
New Orleans, ever distinguished as a zealous 
member of the democratic party, and whose 
military achievements had already attracted 
the attention of the public. By this means, 
Adams lost all hope of being able to follow 
the example of his predecessors, in occupying 
the Presidential Chair, for a period of two 
terms, or eight years. From this exalted 
situation, to which Europe begins to look 
with admiration, he descended to the seat of 
a private individual in the House of Repre- 
sentatives. He, who by his veto could for- 
merly frustrate the Welshes of a whole nation, 
now only has a single vote in the Second 
Chamber, and passes summers alone with his 
wife, in the very same house where his father, 
John Adams, the former President, lived and 
died. * 

This place of residence has altogether the 
appearance of a common farm-house, situated 
near the high road, shaded only by a few 
venerable trees, which add to the antiquity 
and gloom of the spot. The furniture is all 

• It is a remarkable circumstance that two Presidents, John 
Adams and James Munro, died on the anniversary of the Inde- 
pendence : the former on the 4th July, 1829— the latter on the 4th 
Julv, 1832. 


old fashioned — the drawing-room, for in- 
stance, being of red damask ; and the walls 
ornamented with portraits of ancestors dress- 
ed in a kind of petticoat, and with powdered 
wigs. Mr. Adams was from home when I 
paid my visit, so that 1 had no opportunity 
of remaining long in a place with which so 
many agreeable recollections are associated. 
I met him, however, a short distance from 
his residence. The former President and 
Magistrate in the New World was seen 
walking with a knife in his hand, cutting- 
willow- briars to make a stick ! He is a man 
between sixty and seventy, but looks much 
younger. He is far from being tall ; but has 
a fine open countenance, indicative of su- 
perior talents, which gains upon one by de- 
grees. He recollected, with peculiar plea- 
sure, Sweden, Stockholm, and many private 
individuals residing in that capital ; and, on 
parting, left on my mind an impression of 
deep respect and veneration, which can never 
be effaced. 

A few miles outside the Port of Boston is 
Nahant, a rock connected with the main land 
by a narrow promontory, where the inha- 
bitants resort during the summer months, to 
avoid the oppressive heat. The waves of an 



agitated sea beat constantly against the foot 
of this rock, sending their white foam high 
in the air, rendering the rugged sides con- 
tinually damp. The musical sounds of re- 
tiring waves are as pleasing to a townsman as 
the sight of the manifold sails which cover 
the surface of the sea. But it is more with 
the view of inhaling fresh air that this spot 
is frequented. The first time I visited it, I 
found all the houses occupied by people who 
said they required to breathe a freer air than 
the city could afford. 

Nahant is, in my opinion, rather an un- 
pleasant place. A calm day is a rare occur- 
rence : the wind is so sharp and piercing, that 
one fancies himself under a European sky in 
November. A few miserable trees, scarcely 
deserving the name, are all that can grow on 
these rocks ; and they are likely to remain in 
their present immature state for centuries to 
come. Among the natural curiosities shown 
to strangers, is a crevice in a rock called 
" the Swallows' Cave," represented in the 
'' Northern Traveller" as a phenomenon. I 
am far from being of the same opinion as 
the author of this publication, though the 
cave may possess interest with some visiters. 
Chacan a son gout. 

220 A BALL. 

In the evening a ball was g;iven in the hotel. 
Dancing* consisted almost exclusively of qua- 
drilles, here called " Cotillions." Waltzing 
had but lately been introduced in society, in 
spite of strenuous opposition on the part of 
elderly ladies. At intervals it was resorted 
to in the course of the evening, but subject 
to many restrictions and exceptions. A 
young lady, for instance, would by no means 
consent to waltz with a gentleman whom 
she did not previously know ; and many a 
prudent mother gave strong injunctions to 
her daughter not to permit the cavalier to 
approach nearer than a certain distance. But 
a practice which surprised me more than any 
other was, that one of the musicians attached 
to the band constantly called out to the 
dancers the different figures they were to go 
through. The individual selected upon this 
occasion was a true original. His under-lip 
appeared perfectly unconnected with the 
upper one : his eyes seemed to suffer from the 
light, for he seldom or ever opened them. 
The instrument on which he performed was 
a broken violin ; and he often beat time so 
loud with one foot, that the music was 
drowned by the noise. His features remained 
all the time unchanged, something like those 


of an Indian witnessing the representation of 
a tragedy for the first time. Without taking 
any notice of what passed around him, he 
called out as loud as he could, in a hoarse 
and shrill voice : " Advance !" *' Retreat !" 
'' Ladies' chain !" »^ Gentlemen's chain !" 
'' Sideways !" and so on ; until a double and 
long cadence announced to the company that 
the dance was at an end. 

Report stated, that, not far from Nahant, 
a sea-monster had been seen. A number of 
persons positively asserted in the newspapers 
that they had, with their own eyes, seen the 
back of this stranger a considerable distance 
above the surface of the sea, enjoying the be- 
nefit of a sunny day. Guessings and calcu- 
lations as to the nature of the monster were 
to be expected from a people ever anxious 
that every thing should be as clear as the sun 
at noonday. After much discussion, it was 
finally settled, that the animal could be no- 
thing else but a sea-serpent. Incontrovertible 
proofs were adduced in support of this conclu- 
sion, and woe to him who ventured to ques- 
tion the existence of the animal ! Some bold 
and incredulous individual hazarded, it is 
true, an assertion, that the pretended sea-ser- 
pent was nothing but a shoal of porpoises ; 


but this doctrine was soon overruled : and at 
present the fact of a sea-serpent having been 
seen in the neighbourhood of Boston is as 
well established in the minds of every one, as 
that mankind and animals in our days are 
only pigmies in comparison with the giants 
and mammoths of former times. 

At Brighton, a small hamlet three miles 
from Boston, a cattle-fair is held every year 
in the month of October : it is renowned all 
over America. Cattle is sent to this place 
from the remotest parts of the country ; 1 
even remember having heard that a large 
drove of horned cattle, belonging to Mr. Clay, 
came to Brighton, all the way from Kentucky. 
In one single day, sales have been effected of 
no less than the enormous quantity of seven 
thousand hogs, eleven thousand sheep, and 
five thousand horned cattle. The fair had 
not commenced when I visited Brighton, but 
I found stalls and inclosures in every direction 
prepared to receive the animals on their arri- 

On returning from this excursion, I was 
overtaken by one of the most awful storms I 
ever witnessed. It came on so suddenly, that 
no person was prepared for it. A tolerably 
large proportion of liats took their departure 


in the first onset, and the owners ran foul of 
each other in quest of their property, carried 
away by the violence of the wind. But what 
particularly attracted my attention was, that 
within five minutes the streets were filled with 
fragments of paper, sailing whichever way 
the eye turned, together with a variety of ve- 
getables, pieces of linen, and other materials, 
entirely interrupting the view. I happened 
to mention this circumstance to one of the 
citizens of the place, and received the follow- 
ing remarkable answer : '' No nation on 
earth," said he, " uses a hat for so many pur- 
poses as a Yankee : it serves him at once for 
a head-covering, a writing-desk, a larder, and 
a portmanteau. In it the merchant deposits 
patterns of various descriptions : the doctor 
uses it as an apothecary's-shop : the married 
man, returning from market, converts it into 
a depository for potatoes and other vegeta- 
bles : to the traveller it serves as a knapsack. 
Nothing has been more severely censured 
among enlightened people than the reform 
lately introduced in the shape of hats. By 
the present fashion, it is next to impossible to 
put more in its inside than a pocket-handker- 
chief and a dozen of cigars. Should, unfor- 
tunately, the present form be still more cur- 


tailed, then there will be no enduring the 
caprice of fashion, and who knows but a 
dreadful revolution may be the consequence!" 

That this picture is somewhat exaggerated, 
cannot well be denied, hut entirely without 
foundation it certainly is not. A hat has 
unquestionably more offices to perform in these 
States than in any other country. To stuff 
it with newspapers, letters, and cigars, is of 
common occurrence. Can it then be won- 
dered at if, when a sudden gust of wind dis- 
lodges it from the head, a shoal of imprisoned 
objects should seek to take advantage of their 
liberty ? 

It was in the middle of September that with 
much regret I quitted hospitable Boston, on 
my return to New York. I directed my 
course through Pawtucket and Providence. 
The former place has considerable cotton- 
factories, worked by water-power from the 
river Pawtucket, w^hich runs through the 
town, and forms the boundary between the 
States of Massachusetts and Rhode Island. 
Providence is the capital of the latter State, 
and about one mile distant from the mouth of 
the river. The town was founded as far back 
as the year 1636, by a puritan clergyman of 
the name of Roger Williams, who, on account 



of his religious principles, had been exiled 
from Massachusetts. It was then called by 
the Indians Mooshausick, but changed by 
him to Providence, in commemoration of his 
wonderful escape from persecution. The town 
is mostly built of wood, but has a gay and 
lively appearance. The cotton-factories esta- 
blished in its vicinity have greatly contributed 
to its rise as a trading place. Blackstone's 
Canal, uniting Worcester and Providence, 
commences in the latter. Among the im- 
provements, from which great results are ex- 
pected, may be mentioned two railroads now 
constructing between Boston and Providence 
and Providence and Stonington, which, when 
finished, will considerably facilitate the com- 
munication between New York and Boston. 

One of the finest and most comfortable 
steamboats in America, the President, was 
then lying at the wharf, ready to start for 
New York. I hastened on board, and shortly 
afterwards the wheels were put in motion. It 
was not long before the capital of Rhode 
Island disappeared from oar view, and, with 
the rapidity of lightning, the President parsed 
ships, headlands, and villages. A few miles 
from Newport, Mount Hope appeared in the 
distance, the last stronghold of the vanquished, 

VOL. I. Q 


but magnanimous, King Philip. No Indian 
was ever more dreaded by civilized man. A 
century and a half has now elapsed since this 
hero of Pokanoket fell a victim to his own 
race, but even to this day his name is respected ; 
and the least object supposed to have been 
touched by him during his life-time is consi- 
dered by every American as a valuable relic of 
antiquity. This extraordinary man, whose 
real name was Metacom, succeeded his bro- 
ther in the government of the Wampanoags. 
The wrongs and grievances suifered by this 
brother, added to those which he had himself 
experienced from the English colonists, induced 
him to engage in a war, with the design of 
driving all the intruders from a country of 
which they had obtained possession only by 
cunning and violence. 

Had this contest terminated as he expected, 
America would, perhaps, at this time, be in- 
habited by the Red men of the wood. The 
issue might, perhaps, have been less doubtful 
had not one of his followers defeated his plan 
by a premature explosion, and before he had 
had sufficient time to summon and concen- 
trate his warriors and allies. From this time 
no smiles were seen on his face. But, though 
he soon perceived that the great enterprise he 


had formed was likely to be frustrated, yet he 
never lost that elevation of soul which dis- 
ting'uished him to the last moments of his 
life. Ever indefatigable and undaunted, he 
flew, armed with a tomahawk, from race to 
race, encouraging- those whose firmness began 
to waver. By his exertions and energy, all 
the Indian nations occupying the territory 
between Maine and the River Connecticut, 
a distance of nearly two hundred miles, took 
up arms. Every where the name of King 
Philip was hailed, accompanied as it was by 
murder and flames. 

But fraud and treason soon accomplished 
what open warfare could not effect. His own 
followers gave way to numbers ; his nearest 
relations and friends forsook him; almost 
alone, he still defied the power of his adver- 
saries, and, when least expected, rushed in 
among them like a lion springing from his den. 
He — the last offspring of a mighty race of 
chiefs— driven from the abode of his ances- 
tors, without subjects, abandoned by allies, 
hunted like a deer, exposed to hunger and 
thirst, hardly venturing to lay down his royal 
head on a solitary rock in the forest, when 
a ball at last struck his heart — was still the 
same fierce hero who once commanded a vic- 

Q 2 


torious army of thousands of warriors. Philip 
fell as a traitor, and his head was carried 
round the country in triumph; but posterity 
has done him justice. Patriotism was his 
only crime, and his death was that of a hero. 

Without stopping at Newport, another 
fashionable watering-place, I continued my 
journey to New York. A short distance 
from Newport, our steamer was obliged to 
stand out to sea for several hours, in order to 
double a point called Point Judith, before 
arriving at smooth water, between the banks 
of Rhode Island and Connecticut, on one side, 
and those of Long Island on the other. Here 
is the entrance to East River, one of the in- 
lets to New York. In fine weather, this trip 
is extremely agreeable. Numberless church- 
steeples, villages, and country-seats, embellish 
the scene in rapid succession. Here and 
there, lighthouses are seen, and, at short in- 
tervals, steamers, apparently in a blaze. By 
the aid of a beautiful moon, we perceived 
countless sails ploughing the deep, whilst her 
da^nling light played on its surface. 

Towards morning we approached a place, 
which, owing to its shallowness and rocky 
stiuation, is considered very dangerous by 
navigators. The celebrated Knickerbocker, 


in his History of New York, affirms that the 
Devil himself had been seen in that neigh- 
bourhood, sitting on the back of a hog, play- 
ing the violin ; and that he fried fish to 
announce the approach of a storm : in con- 
sequence of which, the Dutch Governor of 
New Amsterdam called this pass Hell Gate, 
which name it still bears. 

The steamer, however, fearlessly pushed 
through the narrow passage, and successfully 
repulsed the waves that opposed her pro- 
gress. High rose the sea, but she pursued 
her way, and steered not an inch from her 
course. It was then high tide, it is true ; but, 
on several subsequent occasions, when pass- 
ing the same way, I never perceived that the 
whirlpool at Hell Gate had any particular 
effect on the speed of the vessel. It is not 
near so dangerous as that at Bingen, on the 

The President arrived at New York be- 
fore any house was yet open, so that the pas- 
sengers had the pleasure of perambulating 
the streets a few hours, until half-sleeping 
porters thought proper to leave their comfort- 
able beds and admit the weary travellers. 


Promote, then, as an object of primary importance, institutions 
for the general diffusion of knowledge. 


New York was now what it had formerly 
been. The cholera had subsided, and with 
it the dulness and panic it had occasioned. 
Broadway, as usual, was crowded with pedes- 
trians and equestrians. Wall Street exhi- 
bited its regular quota of anxious men of 
business ; brokers were seen fagging and 
bustling about, as if emerging from a vapour- 
bath. Numbers were flocking to the Banks, 
either to make deposits or to withdraw them. 
Pearl Street was literally blockaded by goods 
and carts. Every corner presented an auc- 
tion of some kind or other. Omnibuses 
wore racing m all directions. Around fruit- 
stalls were grouped amateurs of pineapples 
and melons, anxious to gratify their appetite, 
long checked by the presence of the cholera. 



Dinners, balls, and suppers, were the order 
of the day ; and it seemed as if people were 
determined to indemnify themselves for past 
privation by present enjoyment. Niblo's 
Garden and the theatres proved insufficient 
to hold the numbers that thronged to them. 
Lottery contractors availed themselves of the 
medium of the press to congratulate the 
public on the disappearance of the epidemic, 
and invited their customers, while yet fresh 
from the country, to make a speedy invest- 
ment in the lucky wheel. * 

Doctors' gigs — the only vehicles lately 
parading the streets — were now intermingled 
with carriages of every description ; and their 
emaciated horses began to show life again. 
Apothecaries'-shops were deserted, whilst the 
dealers in rice smilingly calculated the large 
profits they had realized. 

At one o'clock, p.m., it was hardly possible 
to get along in the most frequented streets, 

• In no place have I seen so many Lottery Offices as in the City 
of New York. They are numberless in Broadway. Thoir puffing 
exceeds all belief. Each collector called heaven and earth to v,-lt,_ 
ness that he was the luckiest among his worthy colleajjues. One 
of them went so far as to affirm, that he had paid prizes to a larger 
amount than would liquidate all the debts of bankrupts in the United 
States. This is carrying things a great length. The Legislature of 
New York has at last enacted a law, prohibiting all lotteries after 
the 1st January, 1834. 


owing to the number of belles and dandies 
occupying the pavement. When three drew 
near, it was advisable to remain in the house ; 
for, at this time, all the gold-making, light- 
footed, mercantile fraternity were seen hasten- 
ing home ; and it is at all times a dangerous 
experiment to obstruct the course of voracious 
stomachs and thinking heads. Who could 
have supposed that a city, deserted but a few 
short weeks before by nearly its whole popu- 
lation, and its trade reduced to a state of com- 
plete stagnation, could so soon have been 
resuscitated ? 

Opposite to New York, on Long Island, is 
a small town called Brooklyn, which, though 
only divided from it by the river, may be said 
to be a faubourg. Cleanliness is certainly 
not one of its characteristics : the streets are 
covered with mud, and it may be called the 
focus of Irishmen. 

Part of the United States' Navy is stationed 
at one end of Brooklyn : it is less considerable 
than at Charlestown, but this station appears 
the more important of the two. Several men- 
of-war and frigates were laid up under 
covered buildings, and a few new ships of the 
latter description were ready to be launched. 
The quantity of naval stores was also consi- 


UNITED states' NAVY. 233 

derable. It was here that the steam-frigate 
Fulton unfortunately exploded in 1829, by 
which accident many persons were killed. 

The Americans have seven stations for 
their navy, viz. Portsmouth, Charlestown, 
New York, Philadelphia, Washington, Nor- 
folk, Pensacola. The whole number of ships 
amounts to forty, seven of which are men-of- 
war, ten frigates, fifteen corvettes, and eight 
schooners. Of these, only twenty-one were 
laid up in 1832: the remainder were in com- 
mission in the Mediterranean, West Indies, 
South Seas, and Coast of Brazil. Five new 
ships and seven frigates were, about this 
period, on the stocks. 

The United States' Navy is under the im- 
mediate direction of the Secretary of the Navy 
at Washington. The highest rank in the 
service is that of captain or commodore : the 
question of appointing admirals has been long- 
agitated, but was not finally settled when 
I left America. Of captains there are about 
forty belonging to the service, and their pay, 
when on duty, is from two to three thousand 
dollars a year. 

The American naval officers are in general 
perfect gentlemen. By being a great deal 
in active service, they have seen much of the 

234 UNITED states' navy. 

world, and, on board their ships, or wherever 
they are met on shore, sliow a degree of tact 
and good breeding, which redounds much to 
their credit. Like all seamen, they are frank, 
liberal, and stanch in their friendships. I had 
frequent opportunities of associating with 
some of these officers during my residence in 
America, and still retain the highest respect 
for their merits, and gratitude for attentions 
almost lavished upon me. A foreigner is 
never considered a stranger among them. 
Their artless and upright manner of acting- 
inspires confidence at once. Rudeness and 
pride do not exist among them, from the 
youngest officer to the commodore of a squa- 
dron. With such seamen, it is not surprising 
that the Navy of the United States gains 
daily more and more respect among other 

About fifteen miles on the other side of 
New York, in the State of New Jersey, is a 
small manufacturing place called Patterson. 
A railroad had been commenced, but was not 
yet half finished, so that I had to pass over an 
extremely rough road on my visit to this 
place. The town, with a population of eight 
thousand inhabitants, has within twenty 
years risen from nothing. Cotton goods are 



here manufactured. The factories, seventeen 
in number, contain thirty thousand looms, 
working- two milHon pounds of raw cotton 
annually. There are besides several sail- 
cloth and nail-factories. 

Patterson is situated near the River Pas- 
saic, by whose aid all the works are carried 
on, and which afterwards precipitates itself 
down a perpendicular rock seventy feet high. 
This cataract is no.t particularly distinguished 
for its mass of water or elevation, but merely 
for the picturesque beauty of the surrounding- 
scenery. It is Trenton in miniature. The 
stream meanders slowly and half dormant 
between two banks covered with verdure, and 
expands its smooth and crystal surface over 
a clear rocky bottom, till it approaches an 
opening in the same rock. Through this open- 
ing rolls the whole mass of water, as if from a 
narrow path down a dark, and from above 
invisible, precipice. So near are the walls to 
each other in some places, that the water fills 
the whole channel. Above, a noise is heard 
proceeding from below, not unlike thunder at 
a distance. The spray envelops in an inces- 
sant vapour this slippery, and to weak nerves 
really frightful, precipice. 

Report states that this spot was, a few 


years ago, the theatre of a horrible catas- 
trophe. A clergyman, dissatisfied with his 
wife, I cannot recollect exactly for what 
reason, pushed her down the precipice. When 
the water reaches the bottom of the pit, it 
rolls foaming and agitated a few hundred 
yards between the close rocks, beneath a 
feeble bridge thrown across the precipice 
by the hand of man : it then takes a sudden 
turn in nearly an opposite direction to its 
former course, and insensibly disappears be- 
tween bushes and shrubberies, below which 
are seen the factories, that are put in motion 
by its agency. 

In the month of October every year the 
city of New York has an exhibition of Ame- 
rican manufactures, patronized by a society 
called the American Institute. Its avowed 
object, as the prospectus states, is to pro- 
mote and encourage within the State of New 
York, as well as in other States, native in- 
dustry in agriculture, commerce, manufac- 
tures, and mechanical arts ; and to further 
improvements in all branches, by the dis- 
tribution of rewards to those who make any 
such improvements, or excel in any of the 
said branches. Tlie exhibition first took 
})lace in the year J 828, and has siiicc been 



continued annually. The number of members 
amounts to three hundred : out of these, four 
presidents are chosen (one for each of the four 
branches) who award the prizes. Every Ame- 
rican citizen has the privilege of sending 
goods of home manufacture to this exhi- 
bition. But, when the exhibition is over, 
the goods must be taken away by their 

It is to be regretted that the funds of this 
useful and excellent society do not permit 
purchases of the exhibited goods, independent 
of the prizes awarded, so that a regular col- 
lection might be made, which at all times 
would prove interesting. Upon the present 
plan, it is next to impossible to ascertain 
what progress has been made in the manu- 
facturing of ah article in the course of a 
twelvemonth ; it requires the aid of a good 
memory to pass a correct opinion in this 
respect. I saw a great number of works in 
wood and iron, glass, woollens, and cotton 
goods, models, and machinery, all finished in 
a style and with a correctness reflecting the 
highest credit on the artisans, and proving the 
wonderful progress that the country has made : 
not having, however, seen any other exhibi- 
tion, I cannot hazard an opinion which de- 


partment in particular had made the most 
improvement within a year. 

In one of my rambles through New York, 
1 happened one day to approach a house, 
from the interior of which I heard a kind of 
soft noise. Curious to ascertain the cause, 
I entered. On stepping- in, I found myself in 
the midst of one hundred and fifty black 
children, all of whom turned their large white 
eyes towards the stranger as he entered. It 
was a free-school for Negroes. The teacher, 
an uncommonly active and clever woman, 
managed this whole Negro flock very deci- 
dedly. The little rebellious urchins looked up 
to her with a confidence, which proved at once 
that she filled her situation with dignity, and 
that she was rather a tender mother than a 
severe instructress. Her look was sufficient to 
bring any little naughty girl to reason, and a 
word from her lips struck with awe numbers 
of noisy boys quarrelling about the space of 
a quarter of an inch on their forms. Gentle 
reproof was the only correction adopted by her. 
The children, educated free of expence, are in- 
structed in reading, writing, arithmetic, geo- 
graphy, religion, and sewing. At sixteen or 
seventeen they leave the school, when some are 
put to the trades of masons, chimney-sweeps. 



carpenters, or smiths ; others again become 
seamen, cooks, and servants. The girls all 
go to service. To aspire to something higher 
in society is quite out of the question, al- 
though they are frcc-born citizens; and the 
lavi^ makes no distinction between a black 
and a white man in the filling of the most 
important offices. The prejudice, however, 
against their colour is so strong, that a white 
man would rather starve than accept a 
menial office under a black. To become 
masters of sloops or other vessels, or to be 
master in any profession, is therefore an im- 
possibility. They have the privilege, since 
the year 1829, of voting in the State of New 
York ; but, even in this respect, they are 
treated rather with a stepmother's hand. To 
be eligible to vote, a Negro must possess an 
unincumbered property of two hundred and 
fifty dollars; whilst a white man, in the same 
State, is only required to be twenty-one years 
of age, and to have resided one year within its 
limits. To be worth two hundred and fifty 
dollars is not a trifle for a man doomed to 
toil in the lowest stations ; few Negroes are 
in consequence competent to vote. They are 
in fact very little better than slaves, although 
called free. 


I counted about one hundred and fifty 
children in the school ; but the instructress 
informed me that their number often exceeded 
two hundred. Any one may go or stay away, 
as he thinks proper : it is therefore difficult to 
ascertain the number of daily attendants. 

This school is conducted on a system of 
its own, not unlike that of the Lancasterian. 
The children are kept in the strictest subor- 
dination, and the more advanced in know- 
ledge teach those who are less so. This use- 
ful institution, as well as another of the same 
kind, is under the patronage of the " New 
York Manumission Society," which educates 
in this manner more than seven hundred 
children of the African race. The members 
of this laudable and benevolent association 
belong chiefly to the Society of Quakers, 
those real friends of mankind. 

In the year 1832, there were, in the State 
of New York alone, nine thousand six hun- 
dred organized school districts, educating 
four hundred and ninety-four thousand nine 
hundred and fifty-nine children. Besides 
these, the same State counted fifty-five gym- 
nasiums, intended to form teachers, and four 
universities: the former were attended by 
three thousand seven hundred students, the 



latter by more than five hundred. Further, 
in every village and town, private schools 
for children of both sexes are established, 
all numerously attended ; and, if a calcu- 
lation were made of the total number of 
young* people receiving instruction within the 
State of New York, the result would be, at 
least, fiv^e hundred and fifty thousand, or about 
one to three and a half of the whole popu- 
lation. Since the year 1816, when the pre- 
sent system of education was first adopted, 
the number of school districts has increased 
from two thousand seven hundred and fifty- 
five, to nine thousand six hundred ; and of 
school children from one hundred and forty 
thousand one hundred and six, to four hun- 
dred and ninety-four thousand nine hundred 
and fifty-nine ; consequently, there is an ac- 
cession in the course of sixteen years of the 
former, six thousand eight hundred and forty 
five; of the latter, three hundred and fifty- 
four thousand eight hundred and fifty-three. 
In the higher classes of learning, the following- 
changes have occurred: — 

In 1790, when the whole population of the 
State did not exceed three hundred and forty 
thousand one hundred and twenty, there were 
only one university and two gymnasiums, with 

VOL. I. R 


about forty students in the former, and about 
one hundred and fifty in the latter. In 1810, 
when the population of the State amounted 
to nine hundred and fifty-nine thousand and 
forty-nine, there were two universities, and 
one medical university, and twenty-five gym- 
nasiums, with two hundred and twenty stu- 
dents in the universities, and one thousand 
four hundred and ninety-five in the gym- 

In 1830, when the population had risen to 
one million eight hundred and sixty-eight 
thousand and sixty-one, there were four uni- 
versities, besides two medical universities, 
and fifty-five gymasiums. The number of 
students in the former amounted to five hun- 
dred and six; in the medical, to two hundred 
and seventy-six ; and in the gymnasiums, to 
three thousand eight hundred and thirty-five. 

The expences of public schools are defrayed 
by a school fund, raised by taxes and local 
contributions. The school fund was first col- 
lected from the citizens as far back as the 
year 1809, but did not accumulate to any 
degree of importance till 1816, from which 
period the commencement of the system of 
education may be dated. This school fund 
now possesses a capital of two millions of 


dollars, the interest of which, and the volun- 
tary contributions of parents and guardians, 
together with a tax levied on every citizen, 
amounted in the year 1832 to one million four 
thousand and eighty-two dollars and forty 
cents. Of this sum, three hundred and forty 
thousand one hundred and seventy-nine and 
a half dollars were expended in fuel for the 
different schools, and in the purchase of 
books; and six hundred and sixty-three thou- 
sand nine hundred and two dollars and nine- 
ty-five cents in salaries to teachers. The 
whole amount of annual expenditure for the 
schools in the State of New York is made 
up in this way, that when the State has con- 
tributed its share, or, what amounts to the 
same thing, when the school fund has paid 
the interest accrued, the citizens are taxed 
to furnish an equal sum, and to build schools 
and provide fuel ; whatever money is after- 
wards required to cover other expences is 
raised from the parents and guardians of the 
children. The State has thus only to pay 
one-tenth part of the charges : about three- 
tenths are raised by taxes, and the remaining 
six-tenths are defrayed by the children them- 

I annex an important and interesting docu- 

R 2 


ment, extracted from a periodical, published 
at Boston, under the title of *' Annals of 
Education," showing' not only the number 
of young- people educated at Schools and 
Universities, but presenting a point of com- 
parison between the school education in the 
United States and that in Europe, and also 
between the higher degree of education at 
Universities in America and other countries 
on this side of the Atlantic. 

The State of New York stands foremost on 
the list of school children. It counts in the 
proportion of one to three and a half of the 
number of its inhabitants ; the New England 
States one to five ; Pennsylvania and New 
Jersey one to eight ; Illinois one to thirteen ; 
Kentucky one to twenty-one, and so on. 
By way of comparison, I may just mention, 
that Wlirtemberg has one to six ; Bavaria 
and Prussia one to seven ; Scotland one to 
ten ; France one to seventeen and a half; 
Russia one to three hundred and sixty- 
seven ! 

But, if the United States take the lead with 
regard to school education, they are far from 
occupying the first place in academical in- 
struction. Scotland has there the advantage. 
The Eastern States of America belong to 



the first class in this respect, and emulate 
Baden and Saxony. The Middle States are 
upon a level with Wi'irteniberg, Sweden, Por- 
tugal, and the Low Countries. The Southern, 
again, are upon a par with Switzerland. 
Finally, the Western may be classed with 
Denmark, Naples, and Austria. The States 
lately peopled in the West are about equal to 
France and Ireland, and Russia leaves the 
latter at an awful distance. 


New Hampshire 
New Jersey 
South Carolina 
New York 
Rhode Island 
North Carolina 

, Illinois 










































I 3245 

I 3290 


, 3336 







E = 
































Sweden & Nor- 







Low Countries 












Naples & Sicily 
















A statement like the preceding can never 
be expected to be so accurate as might be 
wished, containing only the number of those 
who study at public institutions. It is well 
known that many young people in Europe 
receive a highly finished education, without 
ever visiting these public places : this is 
equally the case in the United States, particu- 
larly among those who study the law. Ano- 
ther circumstance, which renders these calcu- 
lations questionable is, that nothing is more 
common than to have the names of double the 
number of students that are actually present 
at the University inserted in the rolls. But, 
setting all these difficulties aside, I still be- 
lieve that the above table is as near the mark 
as can possibly be expected. 

A liberal form of government depends, in a 
great measure, on the enlightened state of 
the people : hence education, in the United 
States, is nearest the heart of every American 
citizen impressed with a love of his country. 
He dreads no dissolution of the Union, so 
long as the facility of learning keeps pace 
with the increase of population. He looks 
upon education of so much importance, that, 
if any individual in the community should 
happen to disregard that object, he thinks he 

SCHOOL agents' SOCIETY. 24:1 

deserves to be visited by such a variety of 
reverses as to make it incumbent on him, if 
not for the sake of the pubHc good, at least 
from motives of self-interest, to give his chil- 
dren or pupils the first rudiments of a common 
education, such as writing, reading, and arith- 

Although this opinion seems pretty general 
in America, and all voices are loud in favour 
of the system of education, yet there still 
exists not only a great reluctance on the part 
of parents to send their children to schools, 
but also a real v^ant of schools and teachers. 
To remedy the former evil, a Society, under 
the name of " American School Agents' So- 
ciety," has been formed for sending agents 
in various directions into the interior, for the 
purpose of persuading parents and guardians 
of the utility of education and improving 

In the city of New York there is a Society 
exclusively occupied with this object. The 
want of schools and teachers is supplied by 
the indefatigable exertions of several religious 
sects ; and in the mean time the end is 
partly accomplished by the existence of Sun- 
day schools, where every charitable person 
may give instruction, and by which disinter- 


ested assistance thousands of children have 
been taught to read, write, &c. 

According to authentic accounts, however, 
the number of children in America, deprived 
of the means of education, is about equal to 
that of the more fortunate who obtain it. 
More than one million is stated to be the 
number of the former. Of these, two hundred 
and fifty thousand are to be found in Pennsyl- 
vania, eig'hty thousand in the State of New 
York, (thirteen thousand alone in the City of 
New York). In Indiana, it is contended, 
there are twenty-two thousand children, and 
in Illinois twenty thousand, who cannot read ; 
and nearly the same number of full grown 
persons in the same situation. New Jersey 
has eleven thousand five hundred children 
without any kind of education, and in Ken- 
tucky, in 1833, about one third of all children 
were in the same lamentable condition.* Here 
is a wide field for Philanthropy to exercise 
her love for mankind. 

Invited to attend a meeting of the American 
Bible Society, which assembles every month, 
I had an opportunity of seeing and forming 
acquaintance with some of the best informed 
and most benevolent characters in New York. 

• Annals of Education, September, 1833. 


This Society, considered the most extensive in 
America, has nearly nine hundred auxiliary 
Societies, and was instituted in the year 1816. 
Its income amounted in 1832 to the con- 
siderable sum of eig'lity-four thousand nine 
hundred and thirty-five dollars and forty- 
eight cents, of which one half was received for 
the sale of Bibles and Testaments. The Society 
prints all its books at its own expence, and 
has seventeen printing-machines, worked by 
steam. The secretary attached to this insti- 
tution assured me that one thousand Bibles 
might be printed in a single day if necessary. 
All these Bibles and Testaments are very 
neatly printed, and published in different 
forms, to suit all ages and all classes. A 
Bible in the English language may be obtained 
at from forty- five cents to one dollar fifteen 
cents; and the expence of a Testament in 
the same language is from nine cents to 
sixty cents. Besides these, the Society pub- 
lishes Bibles and Testaments in English and 
Gaelic, and in the French, German, Dutch, 
Spanish, Irish, and Indian languages A re- 
solution was passed by this Society, in the 
course of 1832, appropriating the sum of 
thirty thousand dollars to printing and cir- 
culating the Holy Scriptures, not only among* 


native Americans, but also among foreign 
nations. One third of this amount alone was 
set aside for the purpose of translating the 
Bible into the different Indian tongues spoken 
in the United States. Several parts of the 
New Testament are already translated and 
distributed among the Indians in the West ; 
and it may be mentioned as a remarkable 
circumstance, that auxiliary Bible Societies 
have lately been formed among theChickasaws 
and the Cherokee nations, which are making 
incredible progress. A translation of the 
Gospel of St. Matthew was then preparing 
for the last mentioned nation ; and, when 
completed, an edition of three thousand copies 
was to be printed in a small place called 
New Echota. This Bible Society printed in 
the year 1832 a smaller quantity of Bibles 
and Testaments than usual, in consequence of 
the large stock on hand. It amounted to 
only ninety-one thousand one hundred and 
sixty-eight, which, added to those previously 
issued from the press, formed an aggregate of 
one million five hundred and thirty-three 
thousand six hundred and sixty-eight Bibles 
and Testaments, printed since the organiza- 
tion of the Society in 1816. 


For modes of faith let graceless zealots fight 
His can 't be wrong whose life is in the right 
In faith and hope the world will disagree. 
But all mankind's concern is Charity. 


It was towards the end of October that 
I bade adieu to New York, and set out upon 
my long intended journey to the South. My 
first visit was of course to Philadelphia. 
A steamer hurried me from New York to New 
Brunswick, in the State of New Jersey, in 
about four hours. From the latter place, 
all the passengers were conveyed in a 
number of stage-coaches over a plain and 
uniform country, and on a very indifferent 
road to Trenton, a distance of twenty-seven 
miles, in the course of five hours. To enu- 
merate how often the drivers indulged in a 
drop of the '' inviting liquid " is a task I 
could not undertake with any degree of ac- 
curacy ; but that it was an event of frequent 
occurrence I can assert without fear of con- 


tradiction ; so much so, that the patience 
of the travellers was often put to the test. 
Prayers, threats, oaths, and blustering, were 
all in vain : the *' knights of the whip" were 
insensible to remonstrance, or pretended to 
suffer under the influence of deafness. Three 
times the coaches were changed, and three 
times ten, at least, if I mistake not, the horses 
were watered, till at length we obtained a 
sight of the small town of Trenton, on the 
River Delaware. 

It w^as early in the afternoon when we 
arrived ; but, the steamboat having already 
taken her departure for Philadelphia, and the 
landlord of the hotel finding it in perfect ac- 
cordance with his interest to keep the passen- 
gers over night, spared no pains to convince 
us that it was literally impossible to proceed 
any further that evening. For my part, I did 
not much object to remain till the following 
morning, although, to speak with the veracity 
of an historian, the prospects within doors 
were not altogether of the most promising 
character; but a young dandy from New 
York, one of the exquisites of Broadway, 
who had travelled in the same carriage over 
the rough road, made out a long list of griev- 
ances and objections as to the comforts and 


conveniences of the bed-room ; and concluded 
a very eloquent appeal, by insisting on an 
immediate retreat from quarters absolutely 
irreconcileable with the ideas of a " perfumed 
and accomplished gentleman." So great was 
his perseverance, and so impressive were his 
oratorical powers, that a charitable coachman 
who happened to be present was at length 
induced to listen to a proposal, the tendency 
of which was to take us the same evening to 
Philadelphia. We took leave, in consequence, 
of our landlord, who was highly dissatisfied 
with the effect produced by the eloquence of 
the dandy. 

It was midnight before we reached our 
place of destination. To find accommodation 
at such an unseasonable hour is a thing I 
have been taught by woful experience never 
to expect in America. Upon this occasion, 
I had to enjoy the benefit of a nocturnal 
drive through the streets of Philadelphia, from 
house to house, without a chance of success 
— alone, and unacquainted with the place — 
till daylight at length began to dawn upon 
me. An honest watchman (to the credit of the 
profession be it mentioned) at last took com- 
passion on me, and indicated a house where I 
could at least, as he observed, get shelter for 


the nig-ht. But rest was out of the question. 
A creaking bed, a broken pane of glass, with 
a pair of inexpressibles filling the gap, and a 
confined atmosphere, formed the sum total of 
my comforts. Add to this, the size of the room, 
more suited for a dwarf than a full-grown 
person ; and it is, after all, but an imperfect 
picture of my lonely lodging. By way of a 
substitute for a candle, a dismal lamp was 
handed to me, from which issued a smell so ob- 
noxious to the spiders and rats (co-occupants 
with me of this cage) that these little animals 
were actually taken ill with it, and kept in 
constant motion till the sun at length broke 
in upon them. To lie down in such a place, 
when exhausted with fatigue, is easily done ; 
but the waking in the morning inspires re- 
flexions of a serious stamp. A glance at the 
scattered objects around is enough to banish 
the inmate. I lost no time, as may be sup- 
posed, in taking leave of my comfortless 
quarters, and removed to Head's Hotel, the 
best, without exception, in the United States. 
Philadelphia is, if I may be allowed the ex- 
pression, a coquettish city. Like a young and 
agreeable lady, she takes peculiar care of her 
exterior appearance, endeavouring to please 
all. Every object appears as clean and bright 


as if a personage of note were expected. 
The exterior walls of the houses are washed 
and scoured ; as to the streets, they are pro- 
verbially clean. Everything* announces wealth 
and comfort. There is certainly nothing ex- 
traordinarily grand ; but on the other hand 
nothing mean. No palaces are observed ; but, 
again, no wretched dwellings. Here the real 
and true republicanism is exemplified: it is 
as distant from democracy as from aristo- 
cracy. The inhabitant himself, the easy, 
though not purse-proud Quaker, bears the 
stamp of it. The only possible fault that 
might be advanced against the aspect of this 
city is its uniformity and sameness. This 
is perhaps fatiguing to eyes accustomed to 
the crooked streets of Amsterdam and Ham- 
burg ; but the latter are again as disagreeable 
to him who resides in the parallel streets of 
Berlin or Philadelphia. 

The city is situated on a narrow stripe of 
land between the Rivers Delaware and 
Schuylkill, and built in squares. The streets 
are either in a line with the rivers, or at 
right angles with them : the former are num- 
bered 1st, 2nd, 3rd street, and so on ; the 
latter, again, bear the name of trees, such as 
chesnut, walnut, &c. The city is least in- 


habited on the Schuylkill side ; but, from the 
gradual increase of population, it may be in- 
ferred that this part will be also built upon 
in a few years. 

It cannot, with propriety, be said that Phi- 
ladelphia is a great commercial city. She 
has, it is true, both foreign and inland trade ; 
but the vicinity of New York is a great ob- 
stacle to her aggrandizement. A large pro- 
portion of her business with Europe is trans- 
acted through the medium of New York ; 
and, in spite of all efforts, she cannot possibly 
cope with her too powerful rival. The loca- 
lity of Philadelphia is an insurmountable 
impediment in this emulation : both rivers are 
closed by ice during the winter months, ren- 
dering access impossible ; whereas, the en- 
trance to New York is open the whole year 
round. The Delaware is particularly adapted 
for navigation ; it is navigable about thirty 
miles above Philadelphia. The Schuylkill is 
chiefly used for the transport of large quan- 
tities of coal, forming one of the principal 
branches of commerce in the State. This 
coal is extracted from extensive mines in the 
upper part of the country, which yield very 
abundantly, and it is obtained without much 
difficulty. It is very hard in its composition, 


and ignites very slowly. It is a common prac- 
tice to mix it with Liverpool coal, and the heat 
is then great. The price is much lower than 
that of Liverpool coal. 

But, if Philadelphia cannot boast of an ex- 
tensive trade, she may justly be proud of the 
literary talents she possesses, and of her 
public and benevolent institutions. No city 
in the Union, not even excepting Boston, can 
venture upon a comparison. The American 
Philosophical Society, and the American 
Historical Society, are two learned acade- 
mies, counting among their members men in 
all parts of the world, and ranking highest 
on the list of all literary institutions in the 
United States. The first owed its origin to 
the indefatigable exertions of Franklin, and 
has subsequently ranked among its presi- 
dents men of the highest standing in literature 
and knowledge. The actual president is the 
well-known and venerable patriarch, Mr. 
Duponceau, who, at the age of eighty, has 
not yet given up the occupation of writing, 
or of promoting the welfare of the Society. 
In the prosecution of this object he has a 
powerful assistant in Mr. Yaughan, another 
gentleman of eighty, whose urbanity and 
attention to every foreigner visiting Phila- 

VOL. I. s 


delphia has been the theme of universal 

It was by this respectable individaal I 
was one evening- introduced to the '' Wistar 
Parties," as they are called, meetings which 
are held every w eek at the residence of one of 
its members. Here both scientific and literary 
men meet ; every one, in fact, that Philadel- 
phia contains, laying claim to genius or talent. 

The intention of these reunions is to bring- 
together individuals of different occupations, 
from which, no doubt, there results much 
good. It is only to be wished that, with a 
view to accomplish the object, the members 
would assemble a little earlier in the evening, 
and not convert useful meetings into fashion- 
able soirees, commencing about midnight. 
The evening is spent in conversation on dif- 
ferent topics, embracing both the productions 
of the literary world, the latest inventions, 
and the politics of the day. 

Among public benevolent institutions, the 
Sunday School Association, the Pennsylvania 
Hospital, and the House of Refuge, may be 
particularly mentioned. 

The usefulness of Sunday schools is no 
longer questionable with those whose thoughts 
have been seriously occupied with the plan of 


education in America. Philadelphia is their 
head-quarters. The Sunday School Associa- 
tion there established is not only connected 
with all the other associations of the same 
kind, but prints, on its own account, a number 
of useful books on religious subjects, adapted 
for children, in which particular care is taken 
to exclude every thing that might appear un- 
palatable to the different sects in the countr)^ 
A Methodist may therefore make use of them, 
as well as a Baptist or a Unitarian. By the 
sale of these books the Association nearly 
defrays its own expences : each member 
pays, besides, a trifling sum, sufficient to 
make up any little difference that might 
arise. Any well-known respectable person 
disposed to sacrifice a few hours on a Sunday 
to the instruction of the school is at liberty 
to do so. It is a voluntary choice, without 
any kind of remuneration. 

The Pennsylvania Hospital, instituted in 
the year 1751, by voluntary subscriptions 
among the citizens, was originally intended 
as a receptacle for unfortunate lunatics, and 
those afflicted with any disease not conta- 
gious. It was opened to the public in the 
year 1752 ; from that period to 1832, no fewer 
than twenty-nine thousand six hundred and 

S 2 


sixteen patients have been received and taken 
care of, of whom fifteen thousand two hundred 
and ninety-three were so destitute that they 
had no means of paying ; and fourteen thou- 
sand three hundred and twenty- three con- 
tributed towards the expence. Of this number 
eighteen thousand four hundred were com- 
pletely restored to health, and three thousand 
one hundred and eighty-eight died in the 
hospital. The number of lunatics, during the 
same period of eighty years, amounted to 
three thousand seven hundred and eighteen, 
of whom five hundred and thirty died at an 
advanced age or from accidental disease, and 
one thousand two hundred and eighty-nine 
were cured. At the moment I write, there 
are about two hundred and forty patients, 
more than one half of whom are insane ; these 
are treated with a tenderness and mildness, 
which cannot be too much commended. 

The Quakers, who have always taken an 
active part in the direction of this insti- 
tution, have invariably recommended a mild 
treatment tovvards the unfortunate beings 
suffering under mental aberration; and this 
humane system has now been pursued for the 
last thirty years. Here, as well as in the 
prisons, the superintending officers are strictly 


enjoined to treat the individuals under their 
care as parents would their children. Not 
only must they abstain from every thing 
bordering on cruelty, but they are expected 
to speak in a friendly manner, to reason with 
them on the real cause of their malady, to 
inspire confidence by salutary advice, and, 
finally, to try to prove to them that the present 
mode of treatment will lead to their perfect 
recovery. That this mild method actually 
exists in this lunatic asylum cannot be 
doubted ; for in no madhouse — and I have 
visited a great many in the course of my 
travels in Europe — have I seen insane per- 
sons so quiet and calm as in this. I could no 
where discover the appearance of chains ; and 
vet it was contended that no dansfer was to be 
apprehended from the raving of those labour- 
ing under whq.t is called mania a potii, or deli- 
rium tremens, the highest stage of insanity. 
Experience has proved, that occupation or 
labour produces a salutary effect on those not 
arrived at this degree of mental alienation, 
and is, in addition to a mild treatment, unques- 
tionably the safest and speediest remedy for 
this dreadful malady. 

"Where recovery is possible," says the 
printed description of this Hospital, " it is 


effected by labour ; and, where it is nearly 
hopeless, labour gives at least a sound sleep 
and general composure, seldom found in the 
indolent lunatic." The men are employed in 
weaving, wood-cutting, and so on : the women 
sew, spin, knit, &c. Books and newspapers 
are given to those disposed to read. Even 
music is encouraged among them ; and the 
visiter is not unfrequently struck with sur- 
prise, on hearing the sound of flutes and 
pianos in these, of all on earth, least har- 
monious corridors. But the most incre- 
dible part of all is the introduction of the 
game of chess among the insane. It borders 
almost on madness to assert, that a person, 
suffering vmder an alienation of mind, can 
possibly sit down to a similar game, and, left 
to himself, form plans of attack and defence. 
More rational is it to suppose that a being so 
circumstanced would be the last for whom 
the game of chess could be a pastime. None 
requires more attention, more reflection, and 
yet numbers of lunatics are seen playing 
at chess ! 

The building, however, is rather too small 
and confined for the purpose ; and many in- 
conveniences, I was told, were incurred daily, 
in consequence of the insane being under the 


same roof with those affiicted by other dis- 
eases. The repeated fits of laughter and 
noise of the former continually disturbed 
the latter, who required unbroken rest. But, 
independently of this, the proximity had in 
reality a baneful effect on the physical reco- 
very of the sick. The mirth or laughter 
of a maniac is at all times awful, and dejects 
the strongest mind ; but, when it is within 
the hearing of an invalid, it makes a still 
deeper impression, for his mind is already 
dejected, and this additional pressure renders 
him still more miserable, and may eventually 
check a perfect recovery. It ought, there- 
fore, to be a subject of serious attention with 
the benevolent inhabitants of Philadelphia 
to build a separate asylum for lunatics, and 
appropriate the Pennsylvania Hospital exclu- 
sively to bodily diseases. 

In the middle of the square of this Hospital 
is a bronze statue in honour of the immortal 
Quaker, William Penn. The pedestal is of 
white marble. Penn is attired in the same 
costume that he used to wear in his life-time ; 
the square-cut coat, long waistcoat, and cocked 
hat, have always a peculiar appearance, and 
particularly so when copied in bronze or 
marble. His features are in perfect harmony 

264 west's picture of the redeemer. 

with the character which he displayed. Every 
time I took a view of this statue I fancied that 
1 recognized more and more the friendly 
Quaker, landing on the shores of the Dela- 
ware, and bargaining' with the Indians for 
that very piece of land now bearing his name. 
He holds the conventional document in his 
hand — a memorable epitaph of Penn. 

In a separate building-, not far from the 
Hospital, may be seen one of West's most 
admired paintings, representing the Re- 
deemer healing the Sick in the Temple. The 
artist made a present of this picture to the 
Hospital, in consideration of his being a 
native of Pennsylvania. It was impossible to 
make a more appropriate and handsome 
donation : its exhibition insures an annual 
income of four hundred dollars, and has, since 
its first exposure to the public, yielded an 
aggregate sum of twenty thousand dollars ; 
in truth, no trifling gift, still increasing in 
value every year ! The picture is of great 
size, and all the figures are as large as life. 
Several groups are admirable, particularly 
those in the foreground. The principal cha- 
racters, however, are here, as in every one of 
West's paintings, handsome, but without ex- 


The House of Refuge, as it is called, is one 
of the most useful and benevolent institutions 
in later times. Prison-reports of various 
countries relate with horror the very lamenta- 
ble consequences which have resulted from 
indiscriminate intercourse between young 
offenders and those whose whole career has 
been a series of crime. Levity may, in the 
first instance, have prompted the former to the 
commission of petty offences : by daily asso- 
ciating- with the latter, and listening to their 
counsels, they become initiated, and crime 
insensibly loses its blackness. They now 
learn things of which they were before igno- 
rant, and are led from step to step, till 
murder at last crowns the work, and the 
scaffold ends a wretched life. 

To prevent the contamination of the young 
by old and experienced delinquents, Houses of 
Refuge have very properly been instituted. 
They are neither prisons nor schools, but 
partake a little of both. Children of either sex, 
who have committed and been convicted of 
offences, are not only received here, but even 
those who, through misfortune, the influence 
of demoralizing example, or the negligence of 
parents, are found strolling about town and 
country, ready to perpetrate any criminal act 


for which opportunity may present itself. The 
objects are, therefore, two-fold — to punish 
those who have already been guilty of crimes, 
and to guard against the commission of more. 
Punishment is, however, not the main inten- 
tion. The infliction of stripes is only a tempo- 
rary remedy, leaving hardly any impression 
on the unfortunate being to whom they are 
applied. Education and reform are the real 
object of the House of Refuge. 

It w^as in the city of New York, as far back 
as the year 1825, that thefirst institution of this 
kind was attempted. Philadelphia followed 
the example three years subsequently. Citi- 
zens, whose feelings were alive to the suffer- 
ings of unfortunate children, united, and 
formed a society, which built at its own 
expence the present House of Refuge. The 
State sanctioned this charitable institution, 
and enacted a law, setting forth that all con- 
victed delinquents, who were minors, should 
be sent, not to prison, but to the House of 
Refuge. But, although the State has given 
this private undertaking the form of a public 
institution, yet it possesses no control over 
its affairs. It is under the direction of the 
people ; and that the management in such 
hands tends materially to its prosperity is 


proved by the flourishing' situation of several 
institutions similarly circumstanced, and by 
their beneficial effect on young people. 

When a child is sent hither by a Judge, no 
time is fixed for the duration of the detention : 
how, in fact, could this be done ? It is not 
within the sphere of man to decide before- 
hand what period is required for the proper 
and suitable education of a child. It depends 
entirely on the difference of dispositions. 
The managers of the institution are the best 
judges when liberty ought to be restored : and 
they have, in consequence, authority, if a 
liberated child does not answer the anticipa- 
tion entertained of its moral improvement, to 
take it back again. But this guardianship 
ceases altogether as soon as the individual 
becomes of age: if then detected in any crimi- 
nal act, it is handed over to the prisons. 

On entering this school of reform, the 
child is informed of the rules which must be 
observed, and the two following simple 
maxims are deeply impressed upon his mind : 
Never tell a falsehood — Do the best you can. 
The name is then entered in a book, and the 
child is introduced into the first class. In fif- 
teen hours of the twenty four, he is instructed 
in various things, attends to work, &ic. Four 


hours are allotted to school, and eight to the 
pursuit of some profession — for example, 
shoemaking', carpenters' work, tailoring, and 
so on. For each meal he is allowed half an 
hour, and the remaining hours are devoted 
to rest. A short time is granted for recrea- 
tion and gymnastic exercises. The children 
have separate bedrooms, and are thus cut off 
from all communication, which might lead to 
demoralizing consequences. 

The children are divided into classes, ac- 
cording to their behaviour and advancement 
in knowledge. Promotion or degradation is 
considered sufficient to maintain discipline. 
The rew^ards are suitable for children, and 
flatter their vanity, while they encourage a 
continuance of good conduct. A premium, to 
which great value appears to be attached, is 
the appointment of monitor, whose duty it is 
not only to superintend the other children, but 
to attend to their personal cleanliness and that 
of the rooms Punishment consists in being 
degraded from the higher to the lower class, 
privation of recreation, solitary confinement 
in the day-time, curtailment of food, and, 
finally, in case of great extremity, whipping-. 
Every evening, the children are summoned 
before the manager, to give an account of 


their conduct in the course of the rlay. The 
result of the investigation is entered in a 
book kept for that purpose, where each child 
has an account current. At the end of the 
week the balance is struck, and if the credit- 
side (speaking- in the language of an experi- 
enced bookkeeper) be in favour of the child, he 
is rewarded with books, paper, pocket-handker- 
chiefs, &c. ; if, on the other hand, he happens 
to be debtor, degradation follows, and loss of 
supper on Sunday evening, or something to 
that effect. Upon some occasions, the chil- 
dren are even allowed to sit in judgment on 
those who have committed an irregularity. 
Twelve jurymen are then appointed, and deli- 
ver their verdict with a solemnity proportion- 
ate to the gravity of the offence, and the sen- 
tence is immediately carried into effect. 

When the child recovers his liberty, the 
manager always takes care to obtain for him 
some employment, either as servant, appren- 
tice, or agriculturist. A residence in town is 
avoided as much as possible. On leaving the 
institution, he receives, as a present, a Bible, 
together with written advice how to behave 
in future. 

That this system produces incalculable 
benefit cannot be denied. According to 


reports made of the behaviour of the children 
after regaining their liberty, I find that 
about two-thirds conduct themselv^es repu- 
tably. With such results before me, I cannot 
help admiring a plan, which not only corrects 
faults and dangerous propensities, but incul- 
cates, at the same time, a taste for regularity, 
industry, and propriety; which gives useful 
knowledge, and enables the child subse- 
quently to support himself in the path of 

I was, however, informed that to reform 
children after the age of sixteen is a task 
of great difficulty. Theft is the prevailing 
offence among boys sent to the House of Re- 
fuge, and immorality that of the girls ; these 
two crimes, it appears, leave the least hope 
of amelioration. Yet daily experience shows 
that it is not impossible. 

The House of Refuge at Philadelphia cost 
originally about sixty-five thousand two hun- 
dred and thirty dollars ; and the yearly ex- 
pences amount to twelve thousand, including 
salaries to officers and superintendents. The 
amount of the children's labour is only two 
thousand dollars ; the difference of ten thou- 
sand being made uj) by the institution. The 
yearly deficit is owing to the children not 


being' kept continually at work, as practised 
in prisons ; but this is, after all, a minor con- 
sideration, if the great object is attained. 
The ten thousand dollars are richly repaid by 
the redemption of fifty children — reclaimed, 
and changed into useful members of society. 

Besides the institution here alluded to, I 
ought not to lose sight of several others 
equally benevolent, all of which I was fortu- 
tunate enough to visit during my residence 
in Philadelphia. To enter into a detail of 
them all would exceed my limits ; and being, 
moreover, nearly upon the same plan as si- 
milar institutions in Europe, with which the 
public is acquainted, it is unnecessary to 
refer to them further than by mentioning 
their names. At the head of the list I will 
place The Widows' Asylum. This excellent 
and well supported institution is followed 
by The Orphans' Institution, Deaf and 
Dumb Asylum, Magdalen Institution, Asy- 
lum for the Blind, Naval Asylum, &c. 

No city in the Union has such beautiful 
Banks as Philadelphia. The United States' 
Bank, generally called the Mother Bank, is 
an edifice of fine effect, situated in one of the 
principal streets in the city. The architec- 
tural part is copied from the Parthenon at 


Athens. The portico is of marble ; and the 
pillars of the Doric order. The interior, how- 
ever, is not in harmony with the exterior. 
There, every thing appears rather heavy, 
mean, and less pleasing to the eye, probably 
to serve as a contrast to the exterior, which 
partakes, at least, of the classic, if it is not 
altogether faultless. The Pennsylvania Bank 
is another building shown to every stranger. 
It is much smaller, does not strike the eye so 
much as the former, but has unquestionably 
a neater and more suitable appearance. The 
facade of this Bank, as well as that of the late 
Mr. Girard, is of white marble, without any 
pretension to Italian architecture. 

The new Mint was not yet finished when I 
visited Philadelphia; but a fugitive glance 
convinced me that it will be upon a grand scale, 
combining taste and convenience. This is the 
only city in the Union where coin is struck. 

In a long gallery, called The Arcade, is 
Peale's Museum. The contributors to this in- 
teresting collection count among their number 
many natives of the country, now no more. A 
great many objects of curiosity may be seen, 
particularly implements of the Indians settled 
on the western shores of the Mississippi. But 
what attracts the particular attention of every 


visiter is the almost perfect skeleton of the 
mammoth, not long ago dug up in a distant 
part of Pennsylvania, at the expense of Mr. 
Peal. The few bones wanting to complete 
the whole frame are hardly perceptible, except 
upon close inspection. An elephant placed 
beside this gigantic animal appears as di- 
minutive as a calf beside an elephant. The 
shape or figure is, however, not unlike the 
latter, although the dimensions of the bones 
and joints are three times the size. 

The Indians have a singular tradition with 
regard to this animal, which deserves to be 
quoted : " About ten thousand months ago," 
it states, '' it pleased the Great Spirit to drown 
in one day all living animals, with the excep- 
tion of the mammoth, who, closely pressed by 
the rising waters, took refuge on the top of 
an elevated mountain. But the flood reached 
this retreat at last, when the animal began to 
scream so hideously, that the Spirit himself 
was frightened, and saved it from perdition. 
This is the reason why, of all gigantic ani- 
mals which inhabited the earth before the 
Deluge, the mammoth is the only one of which 
any traces are left." 

A few steps only from this Museum is the 
Statehouse, justly celebrated in the annals 

VOL. I. T 


of American history, as being the place from 
which emanated the declaration of independ- 
ence. This old building' is of brick, still of 
its pristine colour, with two wings, distin- 
guished only by a peculiar simplicity in the 
architecture. Age has given it rather a 
dismal appearance ; but even this proved 
gratifying to my eyes, particularly when 
travelling in a country where every thing is 
new and fresh, and where antiquities are as 
scarce as young cities in Italy, sprung up 
from nothing. Historical recollections, more- 
over, attach to this building so much interest, 
that it is next to impossible to approach it 
without reverence. It was within its pre- 
cincts that America shook off her fetters. 
Here it was, also, that the first impulse was 
given to the extraordinary revolution which 
ended in the total emancipation of the Colo- 
nies. It was here, in short, that a handful 
of bold patriots, by a stroke of the pen, risked 
the chance of an ignominious death as rebels, 
or the immortal glory of heroes of liberty. It 
was here that the signatures were affixed 
to an Act which has already had, and will for 
ages to come, have an immense influence on 
the destinies of the world. 


Axr^f 'T^^ '^ ^^^^' ^^^^^1^"^ "o^v ! dark the place of thine abode ' 
before !^^^ ^^^^^ ^ compass thy grave, O thou who wast so great 


The environs of Philadelphia are really of 
the most enchanting character, particularly 
those in the vicinity of the Schuylkill, whose 
romantic borders cannot but be highly ad- 
mired. The country is intersected with villas 
vying with each other in beauty. To point 
out any one in particular would be doing in- 
justice to all the rest. Two I visited, be- 
longing to Messrs. Pratt and Borie, from 
which I enjoyed a most extensive and beau- 
tiful view of the Quaker City. To my great 
astonishment, however, I was told that these 
mansions are hardly ever inhabited. Every 
thing on earth is subject to some objection : 
even in the midst of the finest wheat, thistles 
will sometimes grow — so with the elysian 

T 2 


shores of the Schuylkill. An unwholesome 
and fatal miasma rises invariably from this 
seducing' stream, and woe to him who ventures 
to settle in its neighbourhood! A cadaverous 
look soon replaces the wholesome complexion, 
and health flies away in the midst of enjoy- 
ments of an enchanting nature ! This lament- 
able circumstance reduces property in these 
parts to little or no value ; the villas are com- 
pared to the prohibited fruit, the tasting of 
which entailed death. They appear like places 
lately visited by the plague, or neglected by 
owners too fond of a town residence. Each 
bower bore the stamp of desertion, and the 
footpaths were covered with grass. The 
work^of man had a dead appearance in the 
midst of lively nature. 

But Philadelphia's boast, that of which the 
inhabitants may justly be proud, is the water- 
works at Fair Mount, which supply all parts 
of the city with abundance of excellent water, 
for the consumption of private houses, as well 
as for the cleansing of the streets, and for ex- 
tinguishing fires wh€never they happen. The 
eminence, called Fair Mount, lies close to the 
city, and rises from the banks of the Schuyl- 
kill. A place more suitable for this purpose 
could not have been selected. The stream 



is conducted through a dam to a kind of basin, 
near the foot of the eminence, where several 
large wheels are worked by the mass of water. 
These wheels, in turn, put in motion a num- 
ber of pumps, the aggregate power of which 
is so great that, when all the wheels are 
going, a quantity of water, equal to seven mil- 
lions of gallons, is raised in the course of 
twenty-four hours. Upon the eminence, the 
water is collected in reservoirs, containing 
nearly twelve millions of gallons. It is con- 
ducted hence to the city by means of pipes, 
which, like the veins in the human body, ser- 
pentine in various directions; it is at last 
brought to the houses, and circulates under 
the streets. By this excellent arrangement, 
plugs, placed purposely at regular distances, 
need only be opened, and all quarters are 
supplied. This simple aqueduct cost the city 
no less than one million seven hundred and 
eighty-three thousand dollars : the annual 
expence, which is proportionably trifling, is 
borne by every housekeeper, who has on the 
other hand the great convenience of water in 
every part of the house, even in the garret. 
In fine, nothing in or about Philadelphia de- 
serves more to be seen than these water- 


The new prison is also worthy of the atten- 
tion of every stranger. I shall pass over any 
detail of this institution for the present, intend- 
ing in a future chapter to treat more at large 
on this subject, pointing out the difference 
between the penitentiary system adopted here 
and that which goes under the name of the 
Auburn system. 

Very often it occurred to me, during my 
travels through the United States, as a singu- 
lar circumstance, that I hardly ever discovered 
any public monument in commemoration of 
Franklin. Statues, busts, and portraits, are 
everywhere seen of Washington — even the 
names of Lafayette and Kosciusko are not 
forgotten by grateful Americans. But Frank- 
lin, the great Franklin, has not received that 
tribute to which his memory is unquestionably 
entitled. In a dark corner of a smoky tavern 
in the country, or as a sign-post, his head may 
sometimes be seen suspended ; but this honour 
is any thing but enviable, particularly when 
it is taken into account that the likeness to 
the original is in general so questionable, that 
both painters and landlords are obliged to 
write beneath the ugly countenance in large 
gold letters : " This is Benjamin Franklin." 
— I expected to find in Philadelphia a 

HIS TOMB. 279 

variety of memorials relating to him : but 
even here the memory of this extraordinary 
man has been treated with a niggardly hand. 
His remains are interred in a churchyard in 
the middle of the city. I hastened thither, 
in full expectation of finding a splendid monu- 
ment raised by the American nation. I saw 
only a flat stone over his grave, with this 
inscription : 


This simple and unostentatious epitaph, 
although unexpected, leaves nevertheless a 
deeper impression on the mind than the most 
costly mausoleum would produce. The life 
of Franklin, like his marble, was without pre- 
tension. The name alone, Benjamin Franklin, 
is it not a speaking monument ? He who was 
content with a frame-house during life-time 
was too great a man to court, after death, a 
marble tomb. As a private citizen, he returned 
to the same mother earth that witnessed his 
birth, and for whose prosperity he had lived. 
Near his silent grave now stand the children 
of his revolutionary brethren, watching its 
sanctity, as if it were the property of the whole 


nation. And such it is in fact. The dust which 
covers America's first and greatest philoso- 
pher undoubtedly belongs to the people. The 
simplicity of the grave is its greatest orna- 
ment. Woe to the hand that would destroy 
its effect by an attempt at splendour ! 

A portion of the United States' Navy 
is stationed at the southern extremity of Phi- 
ladelphia. The largest man-of-war probably in 
the world is building here, and is justly shown 
as a prodigy. It is enclosed in a wooden 
shed, on the roof of which is a reservoir of 
water in the event of fire. When launched, she 
is intended to carry one hundred and forty-four 
guns, and will be named the Pennsylvania. 

The President and Vice-President of the 
United States are, as it is well known, elected 
to their respective offices for a period of four 
years. In Pennsylvania, the election takes 
place in the following manner : four months 
before the duties of the office are entered upon, 
electors are chosen by the people, who after- 
wards vote. A similar day of election took 
place on the 2d of November in Philadelphia. 
The friends of the respective candidates, Jack- 
son, Clay, and Wirt, had, during the preceding 
week, used every exertion to influence voters 
to avail themselves of their privilege. No 


pains had been spared, and no inducement 
neglected. In England, where I have like- 
wise attended popular elections, the zeal of 
the friends of the candidates is certainly very 
great ; but in America it is carried to a still 
higher pitch. Both old and young, poor and 
rich, men and women, feel such an intense in- 
terest in the issue of the contest, that the 
least result which an impartial foreigner can 
possibly expect is, the dissolution of the Union, 
effusion of blood, and civil war. Whichever 
way I turned, I heard the severest censure 
directed by one party against the other. In 
one place, appeared a number of Clay-men 
attacking and tearing down the hickory 
trees.* In another, a numerous and savage 
mob was seen dancing round similar trees 
erected in the streets, calling out — '* Jackson 
for ever ! " Not far off, a procession of anti- 
masons, to whose party the last-mentioned 
candidate belonged, was seen moving and 
laughing at their antagonists. In another 
group, were observed a number of the most 

* A kind of walmit tree, distinjrui.shecl for its toujjhness and dura- 
bility. President Jackson went always among the lower classes by 
the name of Old Hickory. The reason is variously stated. Some 
pretend that he obtained this nickname after a victory gained at a 
place called " Hickory Ground." Others assert that the quality of 
the wood is applicable to his character. I cannot say which of these 
versions is the correct one. 


influential politicians in the city, haranguing- 
the people on the brilliant prospects of 
their cause, the certain defeat of their op- 
ponents, the matchless qualifications of their 
candidate, and the duplicity, vacillation, and 
deception, of tlie other two. It was evident, 
that the prevailing policy was to keep up 
party-spirit by holding forth encouragement, 
and to acquire new adherents, either by the 
propagation of false statements or by attempt- 
ing to frighten the opponents. 

The State of Pennsylvania is divided into 
certain districts, where elections take place 
on the same day. Philadelphia constitutes a 
district of itself. The city, however, is so 
extensive, that it is necessary to subdivide it 
into wards, to facilitate the elections. Com- 
missioners from each ward assemble in the 
Statehouse at eight o'clock in the morning 
of the day appointed. Each of them had his 
own particular box placed near the avenue 
of trees fronting the house. The voters ap- 
proached these boxes whenever they w^ished 
to give a vote, and delivered a printed card, 
on which the name of the electors was 
inscribed, and signed by the voter. It being; 
understood that none except those who be- 
long to the ward of which the box bears the 


name are allowed to vote, it may be supposed 
that the person who receives the vote must 
know the respective voters. But, if any 
doubt arises as to the eligibility of the party, 
the commissioner has the privilege of insist- 
ing upon his oath, and the production of 
receipts for paid taxes. Before the boxes 
thronged a number of people belonging to 
the three aspiring candidates, distinguished 
only by the different names on voting cards, 
and which were pasted on boards and car- 
ried about in the shape of flags. Some of 
these cards had the portraits of the candi- 
dates for the presidency; on others were 
written or printed eulogies of them. The 
conflict near the boxes w^as often attended 
with bloodshed, and several of the combat- 
ants were carried away from the field of 
battle wounded and disfigured. These fights 
continued the whole day uninterruptedly; and 
about ten o'clock at night the boxes were shut 
up, when a retreat was effected by the strag- 
gling party to other parts of the city. The 
uproar spread in every direction ; yells and 
discordant sounds were heard in all parts ; 
the arrival of an enemy, or of the plague, 
could not have caused a greater disturbance. 
1 took a walk late in the evening to look at the 


different transparencies which each party 
had exhibited before their committee-rooms. 
An attack, perfectly organized, took place on 
one of these rooms, and the assault was only 
repulsed by the besieged after a most obsti- 
nate resistance, when about fifty wounded 
were left on the field of battle. These scenes 
did not end till morning. 

On the following day, the inhabitants of the 
city were officially informed that the anti- Jack- 
son party had a majority in Philadelphia of 
about one thousand nine hundred votes. Re- 
turns were also transmitted from different 
parts of the State in the course of this and 
the following day, showing the issue of the 
election ; but, when all these were summed 
up at last, Jackson's party appeared to 
have the ascendency, and his election in 
Pennsylvania was consequently secured. This 
result, quite contrary to the wishes of the 
majority in Philadelphia, did not, however, 
create any disturbance among the party who 
but a few evenings before had displayed an 
almost revolutionary zeal in the cause, and 
actually shed blo;xl to secure victory over the 
Jackson men. On the contrary, they heard 
the announcement of their defeat with a 
composure worthy of imitation ; I observed 


even some, who had commanded at the late 
attack on the committee-room, laugh at the 
issue of the election. This singular circum- 
stance was often adduced to me as the per- 
fection of the electioneering system. A strong 
feature in its favour it undoubtedly is; but 
to say that the system is altogether perfect 
is an assertion by no means admitted by all 
enlightened citizens in America. 

Does a country in reality derive any benefit 
from elections which leave an equal power in 
the hands of the rich and the poor? Is it 
reasonable, that an individual, whose interest 
it is to maintain order and peace in a State, 
who has every thing to lose and nothing to 
gain by convulsions, should have no more to 
say than the less fortunate, who only knows 
by reputation the candidate he is going to 
vote for? To answer this question in the 
manner I often heard borders in a great 
measure on chimera. I was told, for instance, 
that every citizen in the United States has 
more or less reason to vote in an independent 
way ; the facility of gaining a livelihood being 
so great, that free men must of necessity 
take some interest in the tranquillity and 
prosperity of the country — that education is 
a sufficient guarantee against the influence 


of bribery and corruption. I certainh' am 
not of this opinion, and have only to adduce, 
in support of my dissent, the result of the 
elections of late years. The Constitution may 
perhaps be literally the same as in the time 
of Washington; but democracy has recently 
made such extraordinary strides, that former 
apprehensions of aristocratical ascendency 
have now been converted into a dread of 

At the Presidential Election in 1828, num- 
berless Irish emigrants had great influence 
on its issue ; in 1832 also the poorer classes 
determined the result. This progressive 
power among the lower masses is the more 
to be apprehended, as a corresponding and 
equally rapid accession among wealthy and 
enlightened citizens cannot possibly take 
place. What will be the consequence? If 
ever the beautiful republican ship should 
strike on a shoal, it would be at the period 
of a Presidential election. 

No State has so democratic a Constitution 
as Pennsylvania. To be qualified to vote, it 
is only necessary to reside within the limits 
of the State, and pay a few taxes. I was 
told, but I am not quite sure if the statement 
be correct, that with a view to strengthen a 


certain party in the State, a number of people 
were engaged to settle within its territory, 
whose taxes were paid for them. Thus, a 
great many voters were secured, who at the 
subsequent election proved of essential ser- 
vice. This, however, does not apply to every 
State. In some, a residence of two years is 
required before the privilege of voting is 
granted. In others, again, it is necessary to 
be a resident only six months to become an 
eligible citizen. 

Pennsylvania ranking as the second State 
in the Union with respect to population, and 
sending no fewer than twenty-six members 
to Congress, great importance is naturally 
attached by each party to obtaining her 
suffrages. No exertions, as it may be sup- 
posed, are left untried to secure this object, 
which, once attained, is adroitly used to in- 
fluence the elections in other States. In the 
State of New York, the elections took place 
three days later than in Pennsylvania. To 
encourage their friends in New York to 
greater exertions, and to determine those who 
were yet vacillating the victorious party in, 
Pennsylvania sent off extraordinary messen- 
gers, who travelled with the rapidity of light- 
ning. This prudent and deep-laid scheme 


had the desired effect. Both these principal 
and influential States declared in favour of 
General Jackson. The force of example ope- 
rated on the minor ones, and the election was 

As a native of Sweden, the city of Phila- 
delphia could not fail to inspire me with 
intense interest. History records that, during 
the reign of Gustavus Adolphus the Second, 
deservedly surnamed the Great, a colony of 
Swedes was sent out from the mother country, 
and settled on both banks of the Delaware. 
This part of the New World appeared to 
them so inviting and delightful, that they 
gave it the name of the Land of Canaan ; 
and to the spot where they landed that of 
Paradise. How much is it not to be regretted 
that posterity, regardless of the past, should 
allow these elysian fields to be so completely 
neglected, and wrapped in the mantle of ob- 
livion, that not a trace can now be dis- 
covered ! The only thing now known of this 
terrestrial paradise on the shores of the Dela- 
ware is, that its situation was near Cape 
Henlopen, a short distance from the sea. 
The colonists purchased tracts of land of the 
Indians, occupants of these parts, and threw 
up a few fortifications, namely. Fort Chris- 


tina,* Fort Elfsborg,f and New Gothen- 


The Dutch, whose principal city was then 
New Amsterdam, (afterwards called New 
York,) pretended that the country round the 
Delaware belonged to them, having* paid it a 
visit before the arrival of the Swedes : this 
insinuation, however, did not prevent the 
latter from settling ; nor could this pretension 
be supported afterwards, for the Indians had 
totally destroyed all the fortifications erected 
by the Dutch, and murdered the garrisons. 
The Swedes now kept peaceable possession 
of the country, and passed their time, accord- 
ing to traditions on record, with little or no 
care. William Penn speaks of them thus : 
*' They are a plain, strong, industrious people, 
yet have made no great progress in the cul- 
ture or propagation of fruit trees, as if they 
desired rather to have enough than plenty 
or traffic. As they are people proper and 
strong of body, so they have fine children, and 
almost every house full ; rare to find one of 
them without three or four boys, and as 

• Of this fortification there is no trace. It was situated near 
Wilmington, twenty-seven miles south of Philadelphia. 

\ Fort Elfsborg was near Salem Creek, east of the Delaware. 

X New Gothenburg, or Tinnicum, between Fort Christina and 
the present city of Philadelphia. 

VOL. T. U 


many girls ; some six, seven, or eight sons. 
And I must do them the justice to say, I see 
few young men more sober and laborious." 
It was in the year 1655 that this happy and 
contented little colony was attacked by the 
Dutch, conducted by Stuyvesant, who, in a 
sanguinary battle, eulogized by the immortal 
Knickerbocker,* vanquished his enemy, and 
obliged the colonists to submit to the Dutch 
authority. But this victory was of short 
duration; for, in the year 1664, both banks of 
the Delaware fell into the hands of the Eng- 
lish, who became rulers of the Swedish emi- 
grants. But the latter preserved, to the latest 
times, the customs and manners brought from 
Sweden, and continued to have, up to the year 
1831, f Swedish clergymen residing among 
them. Their number amounted, in the year 
1700, to about one thousand two hundred, all 
speaking the Swedish language : in another 
century this number had so sensibly dimi- 
nished, that divine service was no more per- 
formed in the ancient mother tongue. Even 
the Lutheran religion ceased at length to be 
preached to the offspring of Swedish emi- 

• Knickerbocker's History of New York, by Washino^ton Irving. 

+ This year died in Pliiladelpliia tlie last Swedish clergyman, the 
Rev. Doctor Nicholas Collin, loved and respected bv both ('ountr\- 
men and stransers. 


grants, being* replaced by the doctrines of the 
English Protestant Church. 

In the account transmitted to England in 
1683, William Penn thus expresses himself: 
*' The Dutch have a meeting'-place for religious 
worship at Newcastle ; and the Swedes three, 
one at Christina, one at Tinnicum, and one at 
Wicacoa, within half a mile of this town." 
The last mentioned church at Wicacoa,'^' which 
in Penn's time was only half a mile from 
Philadelphia, is now within the limits of the 
city. It is a simple brick building, not painted, 
something like a country church in Sweden, 
and erected in the beginning of the sixteenth 
century on the same spot where the former 
church stood. The inside is painted white, 
without ornaments. Above the altar is the 
pulpit, which, as well as the organ-loft, was 
covered with black when I visited it, as a 
token of respect to the memory of the Swe- 
dish pastor, who died in the preceding year. 
Some of the remains of former clero'vmen are 
interred beneath the altar, among which are 
those of Anders Rudman and John Dyllander, 
whose memories have been honoured by ta- 
blets. On the right side, near the wall, is a 
simple monument of marble, to the memory of 

* An Indian name, signif)ing pleasant place. 

U 2 


Doctor Collin's wife: the husband als^ re- 
poses beneath. In the pulpit and near the 
altar, I discovered several Bibles and psalters, 
printed in the Swedish language, during the 
reigns of Charles XII and Frederick I. None 
can vote in this church unless he can trace his 
origin to Sweden. 

Behind the church is the cemetery, on ex- 
amining which I found a great number of 
names unquestionably Swedish, such as Ges- 
tenberg, Swanson, Lungren, Robertson, Jon- 
son, and so on; others again, evidently of 
Swedish extraction, although corrupted in 
America, as, for instance, Williamson, Med- 
dermark, &c. Several families are still ex- 
tant in Philadelphia, but they are so inter- 
mixed with others that no accurate statement 
as to their number can be obtained. They 
have completely adopted the customs of the 
country, and cannot even in their appearance 
be distinguished from native Americans. They 
delight, however, in conversing about Sweden 
— as if the love of country still ran in their 
veins — and never deny hospitality to any one 
who intimates that he comes from the land of 
which the Swedish bard * thus speaks : 

The rock yields steel, and heroes know to handle it. 

• Esaias Tegner. 


My stay at Philadelphia this time was very 
short : winter approached with rapid strides, 
and the journey I had in view was pretty 
long', and required a considerable portion of 
time. A steamboat transported me from the 
friendly city : passing many tracts formerly 
belonging to the Swedish Colony, I also left 
behind, in the course of a few hours, Chester, 
(formerly called Upland) ; further on, Christi- 
ana ; and arrived at Newcastle, (Fort Kasimir 
of old) from which a railroad has recently been 
made, running to Frenchtown, on the River 
Susquehanna. The banks of the Delaware, 
south of Philadelphia, are low and marshy; 
the soil is, however, productive, and yields 
rich crops. The railroad from Newcastle, 
though only sixteen miles in length, passes 
through two States, Delaware and Maryland, 
the former being, after Rhode Island, the 
smallest State in the Union: the population 
in 1830 was only seventy-six thousand seven 
hundred and thirty-nine. Delaware belongs 
to the number of States chiefly occupied with 
all kinds of manufactures ; the communication 
has lately been greatly facilitated by the 
opening of canals, uniting the River Delaware 
with the Chesapeak. 

The journey over the railroad did not take 


more than seventy minutes. At Frenchtown 
1 went again aboard an excellent steamboat, 
^vhich brought me in five hours to Baltimore. 
The Susquehanna is the largest river in the 
Union : it takes its rise in the State of New 
York, and meanders in various directions 
partly through that State, partly through 
Pennsylvania, and partly through Maryland, 
till at length it empties itself into the Chesa- 
peak, after travelling more than five hundred 


Such is the patriot's boast, where'er we roam. 
His first, best country ever is at home. 


Baltimore, in point of size, is the third city 
in the Union. It is situated on the River 
Patapsco, which discharges its waters into 
Chesapeak Bay. The inlet to the port is 
narrow, fortified by two projecting points of 
land opposite to each other, one of which, called 
Fort M^Henry, is mounted with heavy can- 
non, to protect the city in case of necessity. 

When our steamboat, with the rapidity of 
lightning', entered the harbour, amidst boats, 
steamers, and ships, and I saw the multitude 
of steeples, domes, and monuments, rising 
above the houses, in the form of an amphi- 
theatre, I could not help expressing my ad- 
miration to a young American, close to me on 


" Every stranger is delighted with this 
place," answered he, " and I don't wonder 
at it. There is something so pleasing in the 
exterior of Baltimore at first sight, that it is 
impossible not to like it: the splendid public 
buildings, the beautiful churches, the inter- 
esting monuments, so gratifying to every 
American, the convenient and handsome pri- 
vate houses, have given to this city a name it 
richly deserves, and which none in this he- 
misphere, not even excepting Philadelphia, 
can dispute. It is known by the name of 
Monument Town. But, after all, these are 
not the principal attractions in Baltimore, 
those of which every citizen justly boasts. 
Hospitality, politeness, and unsophisticated 
manners, are the distinction to which the city 
lays claim." 

This picture w^as, in truth, very correct. It 
is not the exterior beauty of the ornamental 
part of the buildings, or the regularity of the 
streets, that I now admire in Baltimore, after 
having visited and become better acquainted 
with it ; it is the sociability, the free and easy 
manners, of the citizens, their extreme polite- 
ness to strangers, and the unostentatious 
information so generally diffused among 
them, which have left an indelible impression 


on my mind. I have never yet met a fo- 
reigner who, after visiting Baltimore, does 
not speak of it with rapture. But why repeat 
a fact so universally admitted? Who can 
feign ignorance of its attractions — of its 
amiable and beautiful women ? Both have 
passed into a proverb in America, as well as 
in Europe, and are therefore nothing strange 
to those w^ho may feel disposed to follow me 
in my proposed peregrinations. 

Among buildings, justly deserving to be 
noticed, are the Cathedral, the Unitarian 
Church, and the Exchange. The first, in 
particular, the Roman Catholic Church, is 
the largest in the United States ; the exte- 
rior is, unquestionably, the handsomest of 
all, the American Protestant churches being 
generally remarkable for their simplicity and 
bare white walls. A dome, with a skylight, 
gives to this church a most agreeable light ; 
and Guerin's celebrated picture of Christ's 
Descent from the Cross, presented by Charles 
X., ex-King of France, and the many little 
chapels, always found in Catholic churches, 
together with the marble altar at the choir, 
and the ornaments, tapers, and flowers on the 
altar — all, in short, forms a singular con- 
trast with the neighbouring Unitarian church, 

298 Washington's monument. 

where the utmost simplicity prevails, and 
which is nevertheless as imposing to a true 
Christian as a temple decorated with paint- 
ings and images, lighted by a multitude of 
tapers, and filled with incense. 

The monument of Washington, the only 
one of its kind worthy this great man, con- 
sists of a large marble column, with his 
statue on the summit. The pillar is one 
hundred and seventy-five feet high, twenty in 
diameter at the base, and fourteen at the top; 
the statue alone is fifteen feet high. The 
sides of this column are perfectly smooth, 
though the original intention was, I believe, 
to decorate it, in imitation of Trajan's column 
at Rome, with a bas-relief, representing scenes 
from the life of the American Cincinnatus. 
That this project was not carried into effect 
is universally regretted, and, I fear, it is no 
longer thought of. The monument, however, 
is on the most elevated and conspicuous part 
of the city, in Howard's Park, at the end of 
Charles Street, and offers the finest view of 
Baltimore, the river, and the country for se- 
veral miles round. 

Another monument also adorns this city. 
It is erected to the memory of those Ameri- 
cans who fell in the battle with the English 


before Baltimore in 1814. There is always 
something so interesting- in the public expres- 
sion of gratitude and respect for services ren- 
dered to the country, that even the most 
trifling monument seldom fails to excite a 
lively impression in all Americans. They 
retain, with feelings of gratitude and pride, 
the names of men who have, in a moment of 
peril, saved country, contemporaries, and an 
unknown posterity. Far be it, therefore, 
from me, like many other preceding travellers, 
to censure this monument as heavy and taste- 
less ! Let it not be forgotten, that it was 
raised by surviving parents, children, rela- 
tives, and friends; it was not the united 
efforts of a nation. Whatever defects it may 
possess, they must vanish before the eyes of all 
spectators disposed to view it in this manner; 
and, if this piece of sculpture cannot be com- 
pared to many masterpieces with which Italy 
abounds, it answers at least its purpose per- 
fectly well, and this, 1 believe, is the limit of 
its pretensions. 

During my short stay in this city, a death 
occurred, which caused as much sensation and 
regret all over the United States, from Maine 
to Louisiana, as when a beloved and esteemed 
Monarch in Europe dies. Charles Carroll, of 


CarroUton, the last surviving signer of the 
Act of Independence, on the 4th July, 1776, 
expired in the month of November, 1832. 

The event was certainly not unexpected, 
as his age was nearly a century ; but who- 
ever had seen the aged man in later years, 
surrounded by a numerous family circle, in 
w^hich he shone with so much lustre, and 
heard him speak of the State fabric, to the 
erection of which he had lent his aid, could 
not help venerating the aged patriot. He 
might be compared to a link between former 
times and the present. Although he did not 
fill any public station subsequently to the year 
1801, yet he was not forgotten by his grateful 
countrymen, for whose liberty, independence, 
and prosperity, he staked life, property, and 

This circumstance alone, that he was the 
last of the bold revolutionists who separated 
the Colonies from the Mother Country, would 
have been sufficient to illustrate his name 
for ever. His star continued bright after all 
the others had set ; and the rising genera- 
tion looked up to it with an almost religious 

Carroll's career was fertile in events : with 
delight, yes, I may add, with the fire of youth. 


he recalled to memory, but a few days preced- 
ing' his demise, the many important epochs he 
had witnessed, and how, regardless of conse- 
quences, and only acting for the public good, 
he had hazarded his own immense estates, for 
the honour of being foremost in the ranks of 
those on whom the world then bestowed the 
epithet of rebels. His long career gave him, 
moreover, an opportunity of seeing his young- 
country twice engaged in a sanguinary con- 
test with the modern rulers of the ocean, and 
yet able, a few short years afterwards, to pay 
off the greater part of a considerable national 

Destiny, however, did not permit him to 
descend to the tomb before the dreadful voice 
of rebellion in South Carolina reached his 
ears. The flame of discord, always destruc- 
tive to a republic, kindled before him when 
on his death-bed. Carroll trembled at the 
idea of witnessing the annihilation of Wash- 
ington's magnificent work ; from his pale lips 
parted a sincere prayer to Him, to whose 
bosom his affrighted spirit soon fled. 

Thus died Carroll, he who, like a true vir- 
tuous Roman, answered a man, who rather 
sarcastically observed that, of all the signers 
of the Act of Independence, Carroll hazarded 


the least by the insurrectionary step against 
the lawful government, inasmuch as many 
persons in America bore the same name, and 
the English rulers, if victorious, would have 
had some difficulty in finding which Car- 
roll it was: "Is it so?" said he: "then I will 
add another name to the one I already pos- 
sess." And the sentence was hardly finished, 
before he wrote, in the important document, 
immediately after his name, the words: "of 
Carrollton," which addition has since been 
censured by people unacquainted with its 
origin, who have accused him of harbouring 
aristocratical notions under a republican 

At his death, however, all private rancour 
ceased : friends and foes hastened round his 
grave to pay the last tribute of respect to de- 
parted greatness. The newspapers in Balti- 
more, as well as in other cities, were bordered 
with black in token of mourning, and all 
united in the expression of grief for the 
death of the deceased. 

One of the journals inserted the following 
poetical lines to his honour, which T cannot 
refrain from copying: they may be called 
his epitaph, and certainly are not destitute of 
merit : 


The venerated and beloved. 
The virtuous and the wise, 
The patriot and the clnistian — 


He has gone down to the grave. 

Full of days, riches, and honour. 

Of no distemper, of no blast, he died. 

But fell like autumn fruit, that mellow'd long ; 

E'en wonder'd at, because he dropp'd no sooner. 

Fate seem'd to wind him up for fourscore years. 

Yet freshly ran he fifteen winters more. 

Till, like a clock worn out by eating Time, 

The wheels of weary life at last stood still. 

I fully anticipated witnessing a funeral 
different from the ordinary ones in America. 
We Europeans take it as a thing of course 
that the obsequies of a great man should be 
in proportion to his character. My residence 
in the United States had then been too short 
for me to imbibe other notions. When, there- 
fore, informed that the body of the deceased 
was to lie in state, that the public authorities 
were to attend it to the last place of rest, and 
that even the President and the Secretary of 
State were expected from Washington, to 
follow in the procession, I naturally concluded 

304 Carroll's funeral. 

that the whole ceremon}^ would be conducted 
upon a scale of magnificence similar to what 
is observed with us. Under this impression, 
I proceeded to the residence of the deceased. 
Two staves covered with black crape were 
placed at the entrance of the house, and in 
front of it, half a dozen black women were 
playing as if nothing had happened. Their 
mirth and wild gestures actually excited my 
anger before I entered the gate ; but this was 
a mere prelude to the indecorous, I may 
almost add, scandalous scene I subsequently 
witnessed in the room containing the remains 
of the great patriot. 

The body was wrapped in a blue morn- 
ing gown, and laid on a simple bed, in the 
middle of an apartment, which had pro- 
bably been a parlour in the life-time of the 
owner. The bed was covered with a 
white sheet, overhanging the sides. Round 
it, were four tapers burning, and at the 
head a crucifix, to show that the deceased 
was of the Roman Catholic faith. The room 
bore not the slightest indications of mourn- 
ing : all moveable furniture had been taken 
away ; but curtains of the gayest colours 
were left, and produced a strange contrast to 
the silent victim of death, but a few paces 


distant. I found the room filled with spec- 
tators, the greater part of whom appeared to 
be Americans. They crowded round the 
body, and pushed each other, at the same 
time uttering' reproaches, and laughing. For 
a long while I could not get near ; but I felt 
indignant at witnessing a scene of merriment, 
and on hearing unbecoming observations close 
to the bier of a departed fellow-creature. They 
went even so far as to examine the morning- 
gown, to touch the lifeless body, and to place 
their hands on the forehead. I shuddered at 
this levity, and turned round in hopes of see- 
ing some person belonging to the house, who 
could put a stop to these improprieties. I 
soon found an individual, appointed to super- 
intend on the occasion — and, as long as he 
remained near the deceased, none dared touch 
him ; but his presence did not silence the in- 
decorous language and laughter, which con- 
tinued all the time that I was in the room. 
When I surveyed the high forehead of the 
deceased and his noble features, I could not 
help fancying that he assumed a look of dis- 
pleasure. Low, indeed, must he be sunk, who 
can joke and smile at the sight of a corpse. 
On the contrary, what an instructive and 
improving lesson is it not to him, who, by the 

VOL. I. X 


side of a lifeless fellow-creature, pauses in his 
ardent career, and reflects seriously for a mo- 
ment, before he himself sets out on the long 
journey whence no traveller has yet returned! 
But, if this preliminary ceremony displeased 
me, I was not the less disappointed on the 
following day, when the funeral took place. 
There was certainly a procession, but without 
order, without the least magnificence. The 
President, in signifying his regret at not 
being able to attend, despatched a few sol- 
diers, with a view perhaps of giving greater 
eclat to the ceremony by the exhibition of 
elegant uniforms. I need only mention, that 
of the number of persons who accompanied the 
hearse a very small proportion were dressed 
in black. The majority were attired in 
grey, brown, or blue small-clothes and coats ; 
some had white hats, a few even caps, and 
all carried umbrellas, to shelter themselves 
from the heavy rain falling at the time. At 
the cathedral the procession was received 
by the archbishop and a number of assist- 
ing functionaries, who went through the 
usual ceremonies practised by Catholics. No 
funeral oration was delivered ; but, in its 
stead, pieces of solemn music and a kind 
of requiem were sung by a numerous band 


of amateurs, which produced a very impres- 
sive effect. When the service was concluded, 
a hearse conveyed the body to one of Car- 
roll's estates, where it wan deposited in the 
family vault. 

Baltimore, although the largest city in 
Maryland, is not the capital of the State. 
Annapolis, a few miles to the south, and situ- 
ated on Chesapeak Bay, has the honour of 
being the seat of the Legislature, without 
deserving it. It is a very insignificant place, 
with barely three thousand inhabitants; 
whereas, Baltimore, according to the bst cen- 
sus in 1830, contained eighty thousand five 
hundred and nineteen souls. In the year 
1820, the number amounted to only sixty-two 
thousand seven hundred and thirty-eight, 
consequently, there had been an accession 
in the course of ten years of no fewer than 
seventeen thousand seven hundred and eighty- 

The prevailing religion is the Roman Ca- 
tholic, which has been unremittingly main- 
tained since the period of the first colony 
under Lord Baltimore. There are several 
other sects, such as Unitarians, of whom 
there is a great proportion ; but, upon the 
whole, it may be said that the population of 

X 2 

308 SLAVES. 

the State is almost exclusively Catholic, which 
is easily perceptible to any sharp-sighted 
stranger, this religion, it will be admitted, 
having certain characteristic features, more 
or less affecting the mass. 

Traffic in slaves is permitted in Maryland, 
and carried on to great profit, particularly 
among the tobacco-planters in the interior. 
No baneful effect on the manners is, however, 
observable, until one approaches the southern 
parts of the State. In Baltimore, for instance, 
you perceive not in the streets that slavish 
ignorance and indifference, painted, as it 
were, on the features of the lower orders in 
the South: here are still numbers of free 
servants, who exercise a powerful influence 
over the less fortunate, who are slaves. In 
the more enlightened and respectable circles, 
prevail a frankness, liberality, and hospitality 
extremely pleasing to every stranger ; and, at 
the same time, this good nature and kindness 
among masters entirely remove the humili- 
ating part in the situation of a slave, and so 
reconcile him to his fate that he forgets his 
debased condition Any person, ignorant that 
slaves exist, would never be able to discover 
it, nothing in the houses or streets giving 
the slightest indications of it. A European, 


proceeding- no farther south than this city, 
will certainly return under the impression 
that the situation of a slave is far from de- 
grading. This discovery, to the shame of 
mankind be it said, is not made till you enter 
the State of Virginia. The principal exports 
from Maryland are wheat and tobacco, both 
of which are sent in great quantities to 
almost every part of the world. Baltimore is 
distinguished as a particular market for these 
goods ; they are brought thither with extra- 
ordinary facility, through the agency of rivers, 
railroads, and canals. A company has lately 
been formed, whose object is to carry into 
effect one of the most gigantic projects in 
modern times, namely, a railroad, not less 
than three hundred English miles in length, 
to facilitate the communication between the 
eastern and western parts of America. This 
undertaking once accomplished, Baltimore 
will gain an incalculable accession of articles 
for export, and also an additional source of 
wealth and population. T will resume the 
subject of this railroad in a subsequent 

At length, I quitted Baltimore, on my way 
to Washington, the capital of this immense 
Republic. The road leading to it passes 


over a hilly and sandy, though in many places 
picturesque, country. No tobacco-fields were 
observable, the soil in this part not permit- 
ting the cultivation of the plant; it is only 
in the interior of Maryland that it can be 
brought to perfection. 

It was on a rainy, disagreeable, and un- 
comfortable November day, that I arrived at 
Washington. The first object which struck 
me at a distance was the Capitol, the wonder 
of America, where the members of Congress 
assemble. The situation of this edifice is on 
an eminence at one end of the city, facing the 
President's house at the other extremity : 
both are connected by a long and wide 
avenue, a mile in length, the only regular and 
close-built street in the city. The stage 
moved slowly and cautiously over an infinity 
of rubbish, stones, and deep holes, as the 
avenue was then undergoing repair. Few 
people v/ere to be seen, and those consisted 
chiefly of slaves. Not a living being could I 
observe : there was none of the noise, confu- 
sion, and bustle, characteristic of a capital. 
Hardly a coach could be perceived : if one did 
appear, it was empty, or the driver was indulg- 
ing in a comfortable nap on the box. In the 
streets, or rather roads, traversing the avenue 


which 1 entered, solitary houses were here and 
there observed, distant several hundred yards 
from each other. I could scarcely believe my 
eyes : 1 fancied myself in a village. Is this 
Washington, said I to myself, the capital of 
another hemisphere ? My features must have 
expressed what passed inwardly, for an Ame- 
rican, who happened to be in the same coach, 
asked me, half-smiling*, whether, with my 
European notions of a metropolis, I was not 
rather disappointed in my expectations ? He 
concluded these inquiries by adding in a seri- 
ous tone: "Simplicity is the motto of a Re- 
public. What you see is a true illustration 
of it. What can be more grand than that a 
country so extensive as the continent of North 
America should not require a larger spot 
than this for a capital ?" I made no answer 
to this remark, just recollecting one of Wash- 
ington Irving's expressions — " Washington, 
this immense metropolis, which makes so 
glorious an appearance on paper." 

Congress had not yet met, nor had any of 
the persons to whom I had brought letters of 
introduction arrived from the four-and-twenty 
different States, to pass as usual the winter 
here : I had therefore no reason to remain 
longer than over-night. On the following 


morning I embarked, in company with a few 
friends, on board an excellent steamboat, and 
proceeded down the Potomac to a place called 
the Creek, distant only nine miles from Fre- 
dericksburg', a small but flourishing town in 
Virginia. Tlie trip down this beautiful river 
was delightful beyond description. As soon 
as we left the district of Columbia, which con- 
tains only three cities, Washington, George- 
town, and Alexandria, (belonging to no State 
in the Union, but under the immediate rule of 
Congress at Washington,) the banks took the 
form of hills rising one after another as they 
followed the course of the stream, and appeared 
in many places, particularly at a distance, not 
unlike the waves of the ocean. Few rivers in 
America have left a stronger impression upon 
me than the enchanting Potomac. It was at 
once a grand and interesting sight : although 
the chill of autumn had already stripped the 
forests of their foliage, it was easy to discern 
what a variety of trees adorned the shores. 

Potomac river divides the North from the 
South, and forms the boundary line. Mary- 
land and the district of Columbia on the north 
side still preserve the aspect of a northern 
climate : Virginia, again, sighs under the 
burning heat of a southern sun, but, never- 


theless, boasts of natural graiKleur. The 
Potomac, taking its source among the ma- 
jestic Alleghany Mountains, proudly rolls its 
mass of water a distance of three or four hun- 
dred miles, conscious that it may one day 
perhaps form the boundary between a North- 
ern and a Southern Republic. But its greatest 
ornament, its greatest glory, is the unosten- 
tatious and hardly perceptible tomb of him — 
the last Roman on earth — him whom repub- 
lican America idolizes, and whose memory 
even monarchical Europe venerates. The 
spirit of Washington still hovers over the 
beautiful regions, by himself selected and so 
beloved in life : and the Potomac, to embellish 
the scene, washes with her waters the foot of 
Mount Yernon. 

I did not stop to undertake a pilgrimage to 
the tomb of the great man : the time was 
too short, and my intention was to return to 
Washington in the following spring. Mount 
Vernon, surrounded by small woods and 
parks, and still occupied by a namesake of 
Washington's, soon vanished from my sight, 
as well as Fort Washington, formerly called 
United States' Fort, situated on a rock on the 
opposite side. From the initials of the words 
United States' Fort, the English used to call 


it, in derision, Uncle Sam's Fort. This ex- 
planation of the words U. S. is now gene- 
rally known all over America ; in the western 
parts, in particular, it is so common to say 
Uncle Sam, instead of United States, or the 
government at Washington, that scarcely any 
other denomination is ever heard. 

On arriving at Fredericksburg, I lost no 
time in taking advantage of the stage on the 
point of starting for Richmond. Here 1 was 
soon reminded of another circumstance, 
namely, my entrance into the Southern States, 
by the execrable condition of the public roads. 
The traveller has to choose between two 
alternatives — to be shaken to pieces, or be 
ingulphed in deep mud-holes. The roads are 
made of trees laid crosswise, emphatically 
called corduroy roads. It would, in many 
places, be quite impossible to effect a pas- 
sage, if this precaution were not adopted, the 
soil being so soft, that the least rain is suffi- 
cient to make them impassable : the clay is 
often three feet deep, the wheels stick fast 
in it, and the carriage is consequently upset. 

If the timber, thus laid across the roads, 
had been cut, and so placed as to fit, it would 
answer the purpose of a well constructed 
bridge ; but, in so young a country as Ame- 


rica, this cannot be expected. The trees are 
laid on the gTOiind in their rough state, with 
the branches only cut off: in a thousand 
places the inhabitants had not even given 
themselves time, or perhaps voluntarily ne- 
glected, to take off the small boughs, so that 
it not unfrequently happened that, owing to 
these leafy branches becoming entangled with 
the wheels, the trees on the road were dis- 
placed. The question then naturally arose, 
which was the stronger — the wheel or the 
branches : but never did the driver attempt 
to check the speed of the horses, from ap- 
prehension that the coach would go to pieces. 
This idea seldom enters the mind of an Ame- 
rican coachman ; nevertheless, there is no 
country on earth where this precaution would 
be more advisable than in the southern parts 
of the United States, still so thinly peopled, 
that you may travel miles and miles through 
forests, without discovering a human habita- 
tion where assistance could be procured in 
case of necessity. 

The cause of this indifference to horses and 
coaches is, that all stages carry mail-bags, 
which, according to contract with the post- 
office department, must arrive at their desti- 
nation at a given time, otherwise the contractor 


is liable to a considerable fine. To evade this 
result, he gives the drivers strong injunctions 
to make all possible haste, let the consequence 
be what it may : they therefore proceed with 
the utmost celerity, regardless of the danger 
of breaking down coaches or killing horses. 
The consequence is, that accidents too often 
occur ; and, on such occasions, if a carriage 
or team cannot be found in the neighbour- 
hood, the driver takes the mail- bags, throws 
them upon a cart, and thus continues his jour- 
ne3% leaving the unfortunate passengers in the 
middle of the road, in a bog, or in a forest, 
many miles from any habitation. 

To similar and numberless other incon- 
veniences is a traveller exposed in the South ; 
and, if he is lucky enough to arrive at the 
place of his destination alive, or wdth un- 
broken limbs, he may indeed think that he 
has had a narrow escape. I must, however, 
confess that accidents occur less seldom than 
might be expected on such roads, and which 
are hardly ever repaired; and the materials of 
which the coaches are built are so strong and 
tough, that holes, timber, stumps, roots, or 
trees, have seldom the power to break them. 
To the eye they appear very heavy and sub- 
stantial, and to my taste far from handsome : 


the iron alone, whicli is used for one, would 
be sufficient for two in England. No doubt 
they are perfectly suited to the roads : the 
springs, for instance, are almost always of 
leather, able to resist any shocks. Jt would 
be as impossible for an English carriage to 
be used here without being broken to pieces, 
as for English horses to trot on such roads, 
or for English coachmen to drive. 

If railroads be desirable, they are cer- 
tainly so in a superlative degree from the 
beginning of Virginia to Louisiana. Pro- 
bably, many years will not elapse before such 
may be constructed in this tract of country 
by entcrprizing Americans; and whoever 
then travels from Richmond to New Orleans, 
by way of Charleston, and will take the 
trouble of reading this brief description, (the 
remembrance of which almost makes me 
shudder) will in all probability not refuse a 
sympathizing thought to those, who, in former 
times, to the imminent danger of life, and 
under numberless inconveniences, performed 
this journey once, but certainly would not 
willingly undertake it a second time. 


That feeling which tells him that man was never made to be the 
property of man. 


Richmond is the capital of Virginia. Few 
cities in the Union can be said to have a more 
beautiful and picturesque situation. It is 
built on a chain of hills, betvv^een which James 
River, navigable to this y)lace, rolls its silvery 
waters. The public buildings, such as the 
Capitol, the Court House, and others, are 
erected on elevated points, and visible in every 
direction ; their exterior, which would pro- 
duce effect any where, contributes to em- 
bellish the whole. The bustle in the lower 
part of the town proves tlie flourishing state 
of the city ; manufactories and institutions 
of various kinds add to the general activity, 
and give life to the picture. 

I visited one day the Capitol, as it is called, 
or Statehouse, occupied by the Legislature of 


the State, not then sitting, but which g*enerally 
meets on the 1st day of December, and is, as 
in all the other States, divided between a 
Senate and a House of Delegates. The first is 
composed of thirty-two members, elected for 
four years, one fourth of whom are changed 
annually, and the latter, of one hundred and 
thirty-four members, elected every year. 

This edifice is situate on an eminence in the 
upper part of the city, and modelled after the 
well-known maisoTi carree at Nismes in France. 
Eight Ionian pillars adorn that part of the 
building fronting the lower end of the city. 
Two entrances, in opposite directions, lead to 
a kind of vestibule, in the centre of which is 
a marble statue of Washington. It is made 
the size of life, and represents him in the 
same simple garb which he was accustomed to 
w^ear. There is something so unpoetical in a 
coat in reality, that it is hardly possible for a 
sculptor to give to a statue of marble, dressed 
in the costume de Marquis of the seventeenth 
century, that life aod spirit, which can alone 
impart a natural air to a cold and inanimate 
piece of marble ; but, notwithstanding this 
drawback, the spectator is gratified in be- 
holding this piece of sculpture. I do not 
question the merits of the execution ; it has 


been conducted with talent, and a due obser- 
vance of the ancient and modern rules of the 
art ; I am, however, of opinion, and I hope 
the artist will kindly excuse what I advance 
in a spirit of candour, that it is the noble, 
well-known features, which, rather than the 
general treatment, must at first glance strike 
every one who attentively examines the statue. 
Washington had a peculiar, open, noble, dis- 
tinguished, and ever-composed countenance : 
both sculptors and painters have succeeded in 
copying it without difficulty. So also with this 
statue : all those who have seen it, and known 
Washington during his life-time, are of one 
opinion that the sculptor has admirably ex- 
ecuted the head : all portraits, busts, and sta- 
tues of him that I have seen are perfect like- 
nesses. The attitude, besides, is very natural: 
he rests his right hand on a stick, and the left 
on fasces. A plough is placed close by, and a 
sword hangs upon it, as symbols of the war- 
rior and the agriculturist. 

Immediately behind the palace of the Le- 
gislative Body is the Courthouse. The exte- 
rior is the most imposing part of the build- 
ing : the facade has four rather handsome 
pillars of the Doric order, and the whole is 
crowned with a dome. The interior contains 


nothing remarkable, except a few portraits 
of Washington and Lafayette. 

During- one of my rambles in the city, I 
met with one of the most affecting mauso- 
leums I had seen since my arrival in Ame- 
rica. In an open colonnade, near the front of 
the Episcopal Church, and directly opposite 
to the entrance, is a sarcophagus, on which a 
great number of names are inscribed. It is a 
monument commemorative of a dreadful event 
which occurred here on the never-to-be forgot- 
ten evening of the 26th of December, 1811. 

On the same place where the church and 
the monument now stand was formerly a 
theatre, where the first and most enlightened 
society in Virginia once found an agree- 
able recreation. A play was performed on 
that very evening, the name of which I can- 
not recollect, but which was extremely po- 
pular at the time. Many of the first families 
in town attended the performance : the house 
was filled with all the talent, beauty, virtue, 
and knowledge, that Richmond could boast 
of. In the midst of the performance, at the 
moment perhaps when the feelings of the 
audience were excited to the highest pitch — 
for thus Fate often sports with men — a loud 
cry of " Fire !" was heard. Panic-stricken, 

VOL. I. Y 


the whole assembly rushed towards the 
doors; but — great God! shall I continue 
to describe the last act of this tragic scene? 
Enough — they met the flames at the entrance 
— few ventured to brave them — some flocked 
together — their piercing cries and lamenta- 
tions reaching even the ears of friends and 
relatives who had remained at home — smoke 
and flames enveloped the house sooner than 
could have been expected — a low murmur 
was heard from the interior of the building — 
relatives and friends rushed franticly to the 
spot — a thunder-crash suddenly drowned the 
roaring of the fire and the crackling of the 
beams — the smoke took another direction, as 
if in fear — a single immeasurable flame rose 
towards the dark heavens, and its light was 
more than sufficient to show to the horror- 
stricken multitude that walls and roof had 
irretrievably buried the unfortunate victims 
in their ruins. 

A church was afterwards erected on the 
ruins of the former theatre; and, to remind 
those who enter the temple to worship God 
that about one hundred and twenty fellow- 
creatures here met a premature death, this 
monument was placed so conspicuously before 
the gate to the church that no one can go in 


without passing- it. What an awful me- 
mento to sinners of the suddenness of death, 
often occurring when least expected, and in 
the midst of earthly enjoyments ! With what 
excited feelings must not the citizens of Rich- 
mond visit this simple temple, and hear the 
consoling' doctrine proclaimed ; they cannot 
fail to recollect that all that now reminds 
them of those whom they bewailed is a com- 
mon mausoleum, with a few black names 
cut in the stone ! Yes, this monument speaks 
a powerful language to all hearts approach- 
ing this place consecrated to death. Let no 
one visit Richmond without performing a 
pilgrimage to this simple, silent, but yet 
eloquent mausoleum. 

Another sight of a different character pre- 
sented itself shortly afterwards, during my 
stay in the capital ^of Virginia: for the first 
time in my life I witnessed a scene, alike 
degrading to mankind and abhorrent and 
disgusting to the friends of humanity. Who 
can doubt that I allude to the slave-trade? 
The newspapers had several days previously 
inserted an advertisement to nearly the fol- 
lowing effect : 

On Saturday next, at nine o'clock a.m., will be sold by public 
auction the follovvino: excellent and jjood-looking Negro Slaves, &c. 

Y 2 


Betsy, a Negro woman, twenty-three years of age, with her child 
Csrsar, three years old. She is a good cook ; understands washing 
and ironing, and is warranted sound. 

Julia, a Mulatress, thirteen years old ; an excellent hand in the 
fields; strong and heart}- ; has a trifling blemish in one eye, other- 
wise warranted. 

Augustus, a Negro boy, six years old ; a good subject for a 
servant. Faultless. 

The above slaves will be sold, without reserve, to the highest 
bidder ; and the buyer may have one, two, and four months' credit, 
on offering unexceptionable paper, &c. 

I was not behindhand, as it may be sup- 
posed, in attending* the auction : among a 
variety of other saleable articles, such as pots, 
pans, beds, chairs, books, &c., the unfortunate 
slaves were sitting close to each other, all as 
decently dressed as might be expected from 
persons who are considered by their equals as 
mere animals. The mother, with the child in 
her lap, was the first who drew my attention. 
She had seated herself, or rather the vender 
had placed her, in such a situation that any 
one entering the store could, without difficulty, 
see both her and the child. Speculators went 
round and surveyed the unfortunate group 
with looks of curiosity and scrutiny, as if it 
had been some masterpiece from the chisel 
of a Canova, a Thorwaldsen, or a Bystrom. 
These cold-blooded and unfeeling beings 
treated the slaves with an indifference, a 
roughness, which made me shudder. Not 


only did they put questions which would 
have made any female blush in whatever 
situation, but which, on the present occasion, 
were still more offensive — not only did 
they divert themselves at the expence of the 
slaves, and indulge in bans mots, as piercing 
to the heart of every feeling man as the point 
of a dagger — they even examined them with 
the same scrutinizing eye as they would 
horses brought to market, inspected their 
teeth, eyes, feet, and shoulders ; felt their 
sides, and finally pronounced their opinion 
" that they were tolerably good slaves, ca- 
pable of doing much work." 

The only one of these Blacks who appeared 
to feel her degraded situation was poor Betsy. 
Her eyes were constantly fixed on her infant ; 
and if at times she lifted them up, it was at the 
commanding request of some buyer, desirous 
of ascertaining if they were strong enough to 
support work night and day ; but the moment 
she had complied with the injunction, she 
looked down again on her babe, and answered 
every question without again raising them, 
or even casting a glance on the inquirer. 
This, however, was not the case with the 
other slaves : they laughed good-naturedly 
at every jest, looked upon the inspection as 


extremely foolish, and their large white eyes 
sparkled like brilliants in their heads with 
delight at the lively and witty talk of the 
" Gentlemen" who had come all the way 
from the country for the purpose of purchas- 
ing human creatures ! Julia indulged in 
innocent playfulness, ignorant of the real 
character of the scene : the more harshly she 
was commanded the better she was pleased. 

But the time for sale approached. Several 
buyers had assembled in the store, anxious to 
overbid each other for the possession of the 
Negroes. The auctioneer invited them to 
come out ; and on a table before the door, in 
the middle of the street, one of the slaves at a 
time was exposed for sale. Betsy and her 
child had the honour of occupying the first 
place in the catalogue. Close to her side 
stood the auctioneer on a chair, and round 
them a number of people who, partly from 
motives of curiosity, partly from a desire 
to speculate, attended on the occasion. In 
the crowd I discovered at least a dozen 
Negroes and Negro women, who stopped in 
passing to gratify their curiosity. They ap- 
peared to listen with an extraordinary degree 
of attention to the progress of the sale. I 
could not avoid sympathizing with them, in 


witnessing the expression of feeling* they 
showed towards their fellow-creatures. 

" This proves sufficiently," said I to my- 
self, delighted at the discovery, '* how erro- 
neous and incorrect the opinion is, that the 
Negro race is only a link between man and 
brute animals; and that these unfortunate 
natives of Africa are only half men, not much 
better than a certain species of apes !" 

At that moment, I heard, to my horror, a 
burst of laughter from the crowd. I looked 
round, and observed all the surrounding 
Blacks indulging in so hearty a laugh, that I 
was nigh being smitten with the same fit, so 
ridiculous was the scene, and so many contor- 
tions did the various faces exhibit. Full of 
surprise, I inquired the cause, and was in- 
formed that one of them had happened to 
make a most striking and ludicrous remark, 
respecting the mother then about to be sold. 
Can there be anything more unfeeling, more 
unbecoming, than that persons, themselves 
slaves, who have often gone through the same 
ordeal of being sold like beasts, and who are 
consequently thoroughly acquainted with its 
iniquity, that these persons should jest and 
laugh at the natural horror and timidity felt 
by a mother at the time of sale ? 


" A woman to be disposed of!" commenced 
the auctioneer, with a loud voice ; " who will 
start a price ? She is an excellent woman, 
without blemishes ! And a boy into the bar- 
gain ! What shall I say for mother and son ? 
Two hundred and fifty dollars. I thank you. 
Sir. Two hundred and fifty dollars once. 
Will any person give more than two hun- 
dred and fifty ? Why, gentlemen, this is as 
cheap as cattle ; look at her eyes, limbs, &c. 
Shall I say two hundred and sixty? Much 
obliged to you. Two hundred and sixty are 
offered, once. Two hundred and seventy- 
five dollars did I hear ? Gentlemen, it is the 
cheapest lot I ever sold. Only two hundred 
and eighty dollars for the very best cook, 
laundress, and seamstress ? Is she to be 
knocked down for a paltry two hundred and 
eighty dollars ? Going for two hundred and 
eighty dollars. Three hundred dollars, two 
voices : T am glad to see you get into the 
spirit, gentlemen. Three hundred and ten is 
offered, once. Three hundred and thirty — 
three hundred and thirty-five — three hundred 
and forty : going for three hundred and forty. 
Really, gentlemen, I am astonished ; allow an 
experienced cook to be sacrificed for only 
three hundred and forty dollars! By Jupiter, 


and all the gods in Olympus ! such a woman 
as this for the trifling- sum of three hun- 
dred and forty dollars! I beg you for a 
moment to reflect, gentlemen ! and a boy into 
the bargain !" 

Here the auctioneer was stopped by one of 
the buyers, a man whose features from the 
beginning- had inspired me with horror, and 
who now, with the indifference and sang- 
froid of a real assassin, made the following 
observation : '* The boy is good for nothing ; 
he is not worth a day's feed. If I buy the 
mother, I will sell the brat immediately, at a 
cheap rate, to the first comer." 

I cast a glance at the unfortunate mother, 
to observe what effect this barbarous expres- 
sion might produce. She uttered not a 
word ; but her countenance denoted profound 
grief and resignation. The little innocent 
child in her arms fixed his large dark eyes 
upon her, as if to ask, " Why do you 
weep, mother?" and then turned astonished 
towards those who witnessed this touching- 
scene, with an expression which seemed 
to say, '' What is the matter ? What have 
ye done to my mother, since she is crying* 
so bitterly?" T shall never forget this 
moment ; it confirmed me for life in my 


former abhorrence of the traffic in human 

The auction continued : — " Three hundred 
and forty dollars — three hundred and fifty, 
three hundred and fifty dollars — a better 
woman has never come under the hammer, I 
feel well satisfied — three hundred and fifty 
dollars for a woman worth at least six hun- 
dred dollars — three hundred and sixty dol- 
lars — going; for three hundred and sixty 
dollars — three hundred and sixty dollars, 
once, twice, thrice — going for three hundred 
and sixty — for three hundred and sixty — 
going — going — going — for three hundred and 
sixty dollars — three hundred and sixty dol- 
lars, I say — make up your minds, gentle- 
men — you will lose her — going — going — 
gone. She is yours for three hundred and 
sixty dollars." A blow with the hammer con- 
cluded the bargain ; the victim descended from 
the table, and the buyer carried her off. 

None of the speculators had uttered a single 
word during the progress of the sale. When 
they overbade each other, it was not done in 
the customary way by means of words. They 
nodded to the auctioneer, who rolled his eyes 
round the assembly, sometimes in one direc- 
tion, sometimes in another. Each movement 


with the head had probably a peculiar signi- 
fication, for the intention of the speculator 
was never mistaken, and he added, accord- 
ingly, five, ten, fifteen, or twenty dollars to 
the bidding. 

The other slaves were disposed of in the 
same manner as poor Betsy. Julia fetched 
only three hundred and twenty-six dollars ; 
and Augustus one hundred and five dol- 
lars. Both were bought by the same indi- 
vidual who purchased the first lot. He ap- 
peared to be a young farmer, and I was 
assured that such was his occupation. I re- 
joiced at least to think that these unfortunate 
beings had not fallen into the hands of a regular 
slave-trader. True enough, his looks denoted 
the delight he felt at having made an advan- 
tageous bargain ; but he treated his acquired 
property with mildness, and never addressed 
the slaves in a harsh and humiliating tone. 

It may, perhaps, not be irrelevant to the 
subject to say a few words here of the con- 
dition of the slaves in North America, their 
intellectual capabilities, the danger and im- 
possibility of a sudden emancipation, and the 
advantages likely to result from the system 
of colonization. 

The first rule which every owner of slaves 


has prescribed to himself, with a view to treat 
the Negroes properly, has been : " Let the 
light of education never dawn upon them. 
Keep them always in a state of complete 
ignorance. Let them never know aught of a 
happier existence than the slave life they now 

This maxim, so unworthy of enlightened 
minds, and so irreconcileable with the liberal 
principles of a free country, is, nevertheless, 
still prevalent in all the Slave States. It 
invariably guides the conduct of the planters, 
whose conviction seems to be irrevocable that 
a spark of light disseminated among slaves 
would be equivalent to a supply of arms, 
which they would immediately turn against 
the white population. This belief has entailed 
the most disastrous consequences, and been 
highly detrimental to the moral condition of 
the unfortunate Negroes. Born of parents, as 
raw and ignorant as savages, from whom they 
learn nothing but vice, they live days and 
years, without being able to understand any 
of those manifold natural wonders with which 
they are surrounded — without knowing for 
what purpose they are brought into the world 
— often without suspecting the existence of 
God. Their religion hardly deserves that 


name. Many a savage Indian in the wilds 
west of the Mississippi has better ideas of a 
Supreme Being", and greater veneration for 
the Creator, than a Christian slave, as he is 
called, in the Christian land of the United 

The greater part of the Negroes profess the 
creed of the Baptists, at least such is the case 
in the States situated on the eastern coast of 
the country ; but many are found who have 
no religion whatever, who do not know what 
it signifies, who are perfectly callous on the 
subject. Do the owners of slaves, similarly 
situated, it may be asked, know this state 
of things ? I started this question to a well- 
informed man in Virginia, and received the 
following answer. " They are perfectly well 
aware of it, but care not ^ straw about it ; 
for they think it better not to stir the ashes ; 
the least spark may cause the greatest con- 

It is very seldom that a slave has learned 
to read : his knowledge of the Bible is confined 
to what others, more fortunate than himself, 
teach him — persons who, from being white, 
assume the exclusive privileges of thinking 
for and instructing the Blacks. INIissionaries 
have certainly endeavoured to circulate 


among the slave-population religious tracts 
composed solely for this purpose, and written 
in a style suitable to individuals of so little 
information as the Negroes ; but, as I stated 
before, few are able to avail themselves of the 
gift, and the object in view is far from being 
accomplished. In many places through w hich 
I passed, and where numbers congregated on 
Sunday evenings, I sometimes found one that 
could read. On him devolved the duty of 
reading aloud some religious tract, or a pas- 
sage from the Bible ; but I must in candour 
confess that this desirable thing was of rare 
occurrence. Upon nearly every occasion, I 
found the slave more disposed to indulge in 
some noisy amusement, which generally ended 
in drunkenness and riot, and destroyed all con- 
sciousness, at least for the moment. " Their 
moral condition," said a slave-proprietor to 
me, " is better or worse in proportion to their 
vicinity to high roads, where they come in 
contact with white men who, one way or 
other, spoil their morals." 

To judge from what I have seen in America, 
I am inclined to think that slaves, generally 
speaking, are well treated by their owners. 
Exceptions there are, no doubt, from this 
rule : what else can be expected from persons 


who, like the speculator at the sale just men- 
tioned, unfeelingly observed : '' If I buy the 
mother, I will sell the boy immediately at a 
cheap rate to the first comer ?" These ex- 
amples of cruelty on the part of slave-owners 
are, strange enough, almost exclusively traced 
to persons brought up in the Northern States 
under early impressions of horror for slavery, 
who, from infancy, have shuddered at the 
very name of slave, and have been in the 
habit of hearing nothing but curses and 
execrations launched against heartless slave- 
proprietors. When these once settle in the 
South, they are obliged to procure slaves for 
the cultivation of their land, &c. for Whites 
look upon it as a dishonour to work where v'er 
slaves can be found ; but, unaccustomed to 
treat them in a proper manner, and never 
forgetting how much labour a man is able to 
go through in the North, they require of the 
slave as much willingness and activity as of 
the free servant. When this disposition is 
wanting, natural to a being obliged to work, 
and who, on that very account, does no more 
than he is actually compelled to do after all — 
but an inconsiderable portion when compared 
with the labour of a free man in the North — 
they then believe it to be the effect of indolence, 
and have recourse to the mistaken system of 


compulsion, in order to force him, by the 
infliction of corporal j)unishments and the 
severest treatment, to work more assiduously. 

In States where the servants are free, very 
few are seen in families : this want of domestics 
is owing to the facility which every free man 
possesses of supporting himself in most parts 
in an independent way, as master instead of 
servant. One is therefore obliged to be 
satisfied with few attendants ; but these few 
must do every thing that is wanted. In the 
Slave States again, where hands are abundant, 
the same w^ork which is performed in the North 
by one man is divided among several: this is 
not taken into consideration by the planters 
from the North, who require that every slave 
shall contribute as much as the free servant. 
From this misconception, barbarous acts, 
which w^ould otherwise never be thought of, 
are perpetrated. These, however, I am 
happy to add, seldom occur. Of the dis- 
gusting and humiliating scenes, and the un- 
natural cruelties practised by slave-owners in 
former times, there are now very few instances. 
Complaints of ill-usage towards servants are 
by far more common in certain despotic coun- 
tries of Europe. 

One of America's most humorous authors,* 

• J. K. Paul(lin<r, aiitlior of The Dntcliman's Firesidi 


in a work lately published, intitled " West- 
ward Ho," has given a lively and true picture 
of the difference between the life of a slave 
and that of a free man, and proves, in a 
masterly manner, that the situation of the 
former is by far not so deplorable as it is ge- 
nerally imagined to be. An old slave, he 
says, accompanied his master to Philadelphia, 
where a man in good circumstances tried to 
Dcrsuade him to desert, and by that means 
obtain his freedom. Pompey — this was the 
name of the slave — felt a strong inclination 
to have a taste of liberty; but observing, 
shortly afterwards, a few poor begging, 
wretched, and swearing Negroes, enjoying 
the sweets of liberty, he declined the offer, 
and hastened home to his master, to beg that 
he would buy the unfortunate free servants, 
and take them along with him to Kentucky. 

If this anecdote is not exactly founded on 
fact, it has at least the colour of probability, 
for I once heard a slave in Alabama utter the 
same sentiments respecting free servants. 

That, consequently, good and tender mas- 
ters are to be met with, and that they are more 
numerous than is generally believed in the 
Northern and Eastern States, admits of no 
doubt. It is, moreover, their interest to 

VOL. I. z 


treat slaves well. In many places, no in- 
spectors or Negro drivers, as they are called, 
are to be found. Planters prefer looking- 
after them themselves ; but when this is not 
practicable, either from absence or other 
circumstances, they invariably choose persons 
of mild and humane dispositions. Slaves have, 
however, always the privilege of making 
their complaints or addressing petitions direct 
to the masters. Corporal punishments are 
still in use ; but I have been positively assured 
that they are annually on the decrease, and 
only resorted to on occasions when slaves 
show symptoms of obstinacy or insubordina- 
tion, and cannot possibly be brought to a 
sense of obedience by mildness and friendly 
advice ; but, even then, the correction is far 
from severe. Upon the whole, they are well 
dressed and fed, and in many plantations 
treated as if they formed part of the family. 
The children play undisturbedly with their 
young masters : they are never put to work 
until arrived at an age when labour cannot 
prove injurious to their constitutions. 

At break of day, slaves generally rise as soon 
as the sound of a bell announces the time 
of leaving their resting places. The day's work 
might easily be performed by a white man in 


half the time, for with them rapidity of mo- 
tion is out of the question. The setting sun 
is a signal for retreat to their huts, which are 
built of logs, and close to each other. The 
slaves are always so divided that married 
couples with their children live separately from 
the others, and the single in distinct houses, 
each sex apart. When age renders them un- 
serviceable, they are taken care of with pa- 
ternal tenderness. Then every one is allowed 
a hut and a small piece of ground, with which 
he must support himself; but, although this 
is a more independent life than the former, 
they almost invariably prefer continuing slaves 
to the end of their existence, to avoid the 
necessity of thinking and providing for them- 
selves — without which, as free persons, they 
would certainly starve. 

A slave, well treated, seldom runs aw^ay ; 
if ever he takes this step, he is either impelled 
by seducing promises, which he is too weak 
to resist, or acts under an erroneous impres- 
sion of his duties as servant. In the first 
case, he soon finds his mistake ; and then it is 
not unusual for him to return to his former 
master, and beg as a favour to resume the 
place he left from thoughtlessness. In the 
latter case again, he deserts, encouraged by 

z 2 


relig'ious fanatics, whose blind zeal induces 
them to propagate doctrines, inculcating that 
a slave is as much entitled to freedom as his 
master, and therefore there is no harm in 
taking that which by right belongs to him. 
That these men, instead of doing good, ac- 
tually cause a great deal of evil among the 
slaves, is a fact fully demonstrated, of which 
I will by and by adduce proofs. 

The idea that a free man must support him- 
self without the aid of others is a powerful 
effect on beings unaccustomed, perhaps, their 
whole life-time, to think about their own main- 
tenance. Many of them will not, at any 
price, accept liberty as a gift, and would, if 
emancipated, give themselves up to the first 
bidder. How many instances are there not 
on record, of slaves, who, after recovering- 
their freedom, return to their former masters ! 
The following anecdote, known all over Ame- 
rica, the truth of which is unquestionable, 
illustrates the correctness of the preceding 
remarks : — 

In one of the southern States died, a few 
years ago, a rich planter, who, happening to 
be without heirs, ordered in his will that all 
his slaves, to the number of several hundred, 
should be set at liberty, and his whole pro- 


perty divided among them. The executors 
appointed by the will bought large tracts of 
land in Ohio, divided them in equal shares 
among the slaves, built houses on each lot, 
and arranged every thing so comfortably, 
that the cultivation of the soil was the only 
thing that remained to be attended to. The 
slaves were sent thither, and obtained their 
liberty. The charm of novelty at first pleased 
them ; but, by degrees, even this grew weari- 
some. They were obliged to think of the 
wants of the morrow, and to become initiated 
in an art perfectly new to them — that of eco- 
nomy. Fatigued with the blessings of liberty, 
which they did not know how to appreciate, 
and which varied so much from their notions 
of happiness on earth — which, be it said, 
en passant, only consist in idleness and a life 
without care — they lost no time in emigrating 
from their new colony, and returning to the 
State whence they came, where they volun- 
tarily offered themselves at a sale to the 
highest bidder. Only a few had sense enough 
to remain in Ohio, and to devote themselves to 
agricultural pursuits. 

1 have before observed, that missionaries 
from the northern States display a mistaken 
zeal in the cause of humanity, by endeavour- 


ing to induce slaves to desert their owners, 
and that this zeal, so far from promoting the 
desired end, entails the most pernicious con- 
sequences. A disposition to disobedience 
and irritability among the slave-population 
towards the planters is too often manifested ; 
and this feeling is so strong, that it may one 
day burst out in an open and sanguinary con- 
test, in ferocity and barbarity, perhaps, not 
dissimilar to the Sicilian Vespers. The plant- 
ers again, with a view to prevent desertions, 
which make considerable inroads on their 
property, adopt the greatest precaution to 
prevent slaves from having the least commu- 
nication with itinerant missionaries, and thus 
defeat the hopes of the friends of humanity 
of seeing a due sense and love of religion 
inculcated in the minds of slaves. Some are 
even obliged, by way of example, to inflict 
corporal punishments, thus again disappoint- 
ing the sanguine expectations of philanthro- 
pists to see this mode of correction abolished. 
Another evil results from this irrational zeal: 
the slave recovers his liberty — but with it no 
property. In what manner is he all at once 
to support himself? I admit that he can 
work, and thus earn a livelihood ; but is it to 
be expected that a being, unused to think or 


work for himself, shall of a sudden become 
sensible of the necessity of it ? And, even if he 
does, is it to be supposed that he can immedi- 
ately find an occupation, the produce of which 
will be sufficient to satiate craving hunger ? 
Persecuted, moreover, by his former master, 
he is obliged for several days to continue his 
flight under the greatest privations to avoid 
a re-capture ; in this emergency he can earn 
nothing. Is it then to be wondered at if these 
unfortunate victims of mistaken ideas are 
induced to commit thefts for the support of 
nature? Would to God they were never 
tempted to commit greater offences ! Daily 
experience proves, however, that crimes of 
the blackest dye are perpetrated by runa- 
way slaves ; there is hardly a newspaper 
published in a State bordering on one in which 
slavery exists, that does not record atrocities 
of which these desperate and deluded beings 
are guilty. I could bring forward many 
more facts to establish the uselessness and 
danger of this interference of missionaries ; 
but my preceding observations will, I hope, 
have represented the matter in a clear and 
intelligible light. 

A man, therefore, brought up as a slave, 
and without any other notion of education 


than passive obedience, cannot be expected to 
govern himself, and does not understand the 
value of liberty. If all his passions, repressed 
by the yoke of thraldom, are at once let loose, 
his want of judgment encourages him to rush 
into momentary excesses, by way of indem- 
nity for past sufferings. Passions are the 
only Supreme Being he worships, and, with a 
view to the gratification of them, no sacrifice 
is too great for him. He is ignorant of the 
Bible — it is only through the medium of 
others that he has heard of its Divine doc- 
trines — he cannot read; and if he could, his 
mind is too uncultivated to allow him to sur- 
render all the temptations and enjoyments of 
liberty to what he considers as the severe dic- 
tates of the Christian faith. He thinks that 
he has already suffered sufficiently under the 
lash of obedience. " Now is my time to do what 
I please," he contends ; and his unbridled and 
irrational acts are in harmony with such 
dangerous axioms. In short, the emancipa- 
tion of a slave, destitute of instruction, who 
cannot read, and who never learnt to think 
for himself, has seldom any other result than 
to incumber the community with a free man, 
who, from want of discrimination, commits 
lawless offences, for which he is amenable to 


justice, and punished. In this manner, from 
being- an unfortunate creature, pitied by all, he 
becomes a culprit, held in general abhorrence. 

It is not my intention — God forbid it 
should be so ! to advocate a non-emancipation 
of slaves ; I only mean to say that giving a 
man liberty does not conduce to the object 
in view, if other means are not adopted pre- 
viously, to enable him to become, in the 
course of time, a useful member of society. 
This can only be effected by a suitable edu- 

Many Americans are of opinion that 
Negroes are differently organized from white 
men. Such a supposition is evidently false 
and ungenerous. The Negroes are not de- 
ficient in any of the properties which distin- 
guish the Whites : they are sunk in a state of 
apathy, attributable to their slavery as well 
as to our prejudices. I often heard instances 
adduced, clearly showing that the Blacks had 
a good fund of feeling, and that they might 
be placed on a level with the Whites. The 
unhappy contempt invariably entertained for 
them by the white population in Slave States 
produces the effect that no action, no expres- 
sion, however noble and great in its ten- 
dency, is taken notice of by the free. This 


prejudice is carried so far, that even the in- 
digent Whites, who, in the sweat of their 
brow, must toil for food, and often perhaps 
beg' for it, treat them as mere animals. In 
the playhouses, and in all places where public 
entertainments are given, they are separated 
from all other living beings by boxes ex- 
clusively allotted to them, in which a White 
would abhor to be seen. In New Orleans, 
this aversion is even extended to those de- 
scendants of the Negroes, who, by a mixture 
of several generations with Whites, have 
become almost white. Is it, then, surprising, 
if these debased and oppressed creatures, 
who never hear any thing but commands, 
who only behold cold and repulsive coun- 
tenances, who are aware that all the world 
knows their degraded situation, and who 
are themselves shut out, as it were, from 
society — that these go, if I may use the 
expression, half sleeping through life ; and 
that, totally indifferent as to the present and 
the future, they become perfect fatalists ? 
'' When my hour is come, I die," said one of 
them to me, when I asked his opinion of life 
and death ; " it is, therefoie, immaterial what 
I do." 

But, it may be asked, cannot a general 


emancipation be effected by an indiscriminate 
liberation of the slaves on the part of the 
owners? Assuredly, the object would then 
be attained ; but another evil would at the 
same time occur, of too much consequence to 
be overlooked — the total ruin of the Slave 
States. As long as wages for free people 
remain so exorbitantly high as they now are 
in America, and as long as the difficulty ex- 
ists of obtaining a free workman — the one 
a consequence of the other — the planters 
cannot possibly do without their slaves ; for, 
deprived of their services, they can neither cul- 
tivate cotton, sugar, rice, and Indian corn, nor 
deliver these articles of necessity at so cheap 
a rate as at present. As the riches of these 
States consist in the produce of their soil, there 
would not only be a general ruin and distress 
in these parts, but the measure would also have 
a material and baneful effect on other States 
consuming the above-mentioned products. 

But if, under these circumstances, an imme- 
diate emancipation of slaves is not advisable, 
what measures can be adopted to accom- 
plish the so-much desired object, cessation 
of slavery ? As dangerous and impracti- 
cable as emancipation now would be, as 
easy and unhurtful I believe would it prove 


at a future clay, if the event be prepared 
beforehand with wisdom and due considera- 
tion. And this might be effected, if the 
Legislatures of the Slave States were to decree 
that only a certain number of slaves should 
be permitted to remain in each State, and 
that the yearly surplus, over and above that 
number, should be purchased and exported to 
a free colony. By the adoption of this ex- 
pedient, the black population would be effec- 
tually kept in check — (in the two States of 
Louisiana and South Carolina, it is now more 
numerous than the White) — and remain sta- 
tionary, whilst the Whites are gradually on 
the increase. I v/ill here quote, by way of 
example, Virginia, which, according to the 
last census, contained little less than one 
fifteenth part of the whole white population 
of the United States, more than one-seventh 
part of free Negroes, but again between one- 
fourth and one-fifth part of all the slaves in 
the Union. In this State, the annual increase 
of slaves is between ten and eleven thousand. 
Of these about six thousand are sent for sale 
to other States ; the remaining five thousand 
would therefore be the number for Govern- 
ment to dispose of. If purchases were made, 
particularly of children, the sum would be 


inconsidera])le ; and, making an average cal- 
culation of about one hundred and fifty dollars 
for each, the whole amount would only be 
seven hundred and fifty thousand dollars. 
These slaves should afterwards be conveyed, 
either to Liberia, or some other place in 
Africa: the expences for sending- them out, 
and for their support in the colony for a few 
months, may be calculated at one hundred 
and twenty-five thousand dollars, or about 
twenty-five dollars a-head. 

One of the principal objections to this 
project, is the difficulty in which Virginia is 
placed of laying out so large a sum as that 
first mentioned ; the latter, again, can easily 
be set aside by Government for this purpose. 
Several proposals have been made to obtain 
the considerable appropriation of seven hun- 
dred and fifty thousand dollars, and among 
others, that of making those funds available 
which the Federal Government receives an- 
nually from the public tracts of land situated 
in the Western States. *" The revenue amounts 

• The old venerable Ex-President Madison, still living in retire- 
ment ni Virginia, is of this opinion, and has, in a letter written not 
long ago, expressed himself in the following manner : " In contem- 
plating the pecuniary resources needed for the removal of such a 
number to a great distance, my thoughts and ho})es have been lono- 
turned to the rich fund presented in the Western lands of the nation" 
which will soon entirely cease to be under a pledijc for another 
object. The great one in question is trulv of a national character ; 


to three millions of dollars. If Virginia, which 
now possesses a larger proportion of slaves 
than any other State, more than Mississippi, 
Tennessee, Alabama, and Louisiana, put 
together, and more than four times the 
number of any of them, receives seven hun- 
dred and fifty thousand dollars ; and the 
other Slave States in the same proportion, 
the whole sum will not amount to three mil- 
lions. No appropriation, however, of this 
kind had been made when I quitted America. 
If the slaves are prevented, by this or any 
other expedient, from increasing in number, 
and if, in the mean time. Missionaries or other 
Christian teachers are allowed unmolested 
to disseminate among the remaining slave- 
population the seeds of a true and intelligible 
religion, at the same time that, quoting pas- 
sages from the Epistles of St. Paul, they pro- 
mulgate maxims, having for their tendency 
that the servant must obey his master — if 
this simple plan were followed, the slave- 
owners would not be every moment in peril 

and it is known that distinfruished patriots, not dwelling in slave- 
holding States, have viewed the object in that light, and would be 
willing to let the national domain be a resource in effecting it. 
Should it be remarked that the States, though all may be interested 
in relieving our countr)' from the coloured population, are not 
equally so, it is but fair to recollect that the sections most to be 
benefited are those whose cessions created the fund to be ilisposed 


of their lives, nor would those States where 
no slaves are found be engaged in continual 
disputes with those in which they are per- 
mitted, on the subject of cruel and unna- 
tural treatment ; the slave himself would have 
a clearer idea of many things to which, as a 
man, he is entitled, without losing that affec- 
tion for his master, or attempting to acquire 
liberty by violent means, which he would not 
fail to do when once acquainted with his 

In the South, I heard continual complaints 
respecting the unnecessary interference of the 
Northern States, in regard to the condition 
of the slave-population in the former — and 
their injurious and blind zeal in wishing im- 
mediately to redress this unfortunate state of 
things. A great deal of bad feeling has in 
effect been excited between the North and 
the South on this subject ; and upon various 
occasions, of the most trifling nature, the slave 
question has been submitted for consideration, 
and this, too, with a warmth that often gave 
rise to altercations. All this will, 1 hope, soon 
disappear, in proportion as the communica- 
tion between all parts of the Union is facili- 
tated, so that the Southerns may intermix 
with the men of the North, and the latter have 


more frequent opportunities of visiting the 
plantations of the former, and of ascertain- 
ing-, by ocular demonstration, whether the 
slaves are really so miserable as they are re- 
presented to be. The zeal of the Northern 
States has, meanwhile, had this effect, that 
the Southern have been roused from their 
lethargy. The slave-trade is now become 
more than formerly a subject of discussion ; 
and the owner of several hundred is at all 
times as ready to discuss the question rela- 
tive to emancipation, as the individual to 
whose mind the word slave only conveys 
something degrading and sacrilegious. It is 
therefore to be hoped that the day is not far 
distant when slaves shall cease to exist in 
the United States, when freedom shall be 
given to them, and not kept by violence from 


As some lone bird, without a mate. 
My weary heart is desolate : 
I look around, and cannot trace 
One friendly smile or welcome face. 


Virginia tobacco is an article so well known 
all over the world, that I was not a little 
anxious to become acquainted with the me- 
thod of cultivating it, and to examine some 
of the manufactories where it is prepared for 
the use of man. The soil in this State appears 
to be peculiarly adapted to the growth of this 
plant, which thrives here better than in any 
other part of the Union. Yet, with all its ferti- 
lity, it is considered a bad plan to grow crops 
of this plant on the same ground for several 
successive years. Wheat and Indian corn 
are generally planted the year after a tobacco 
crop ; in many places it is cultivated only 
once in three, four, or five years. 1 was sur- 

VOL. I. A A 


prised to find the dwellings belonging to the 
greater part of these tobacco-plantations in a 
dilapidated state, more resembling the ruins 
of some old mansion than the residence 
of rich Virginia planters. The reason as- 
signed was, that the cultivation of tobacco 
absorbs so much time that none is left for the 
repairs of the house, or for attending to other 
branches of agriculture. 

During my stay in Richmond, I visited one 
of the most eminent tobacco manufactories in 
the city. Three hundred slaves of both sexes, 
with their children, were working in it ; they 
were hired by the proprietor at so much a 
year. The wages varied according to the 
strength and capacity of the slaves ; for a 
young and strong man, for instance, eighty or 
one hundred dollars were paid, and for a child 
about half that sum. 

America consumes a vast quantity of to- 
bacco in chewing ; the manufactory which I 
visited appeared exclusively occupied in pre- 
paring it for this purpose. The first process 
devolves on the oldest Negroes, who assort 
the different kinds of leaves. The stalks are 
then taken out, and the tobacco rolled on a 
table till it has acquired the necessary form. I 
shudder, when I think of those excessively dirty 


hands which handled the very tobacco that was 
soon after to be chewed by elegant amateurs. 
The most disgusting; part, however, of the 
whole preparation was the manufacture of 
the tobacco of inferior quality, consisting of 
the refuse which had been thrown aside, on 
which the workmen were trampling and spit- 
ting the whole day, until it had formed a uni- 
form and disgusting mass : it was then swept 
into another still dirtier room, and there rolled 
till it became of the required shape. The 
process ends in the usual way by sweating, 
after which the article is packed in cases and 
barrels. It is only necessary to witness these 
preparations once, to take a dislike to tobacco 
for life. 

From Richmond I proceeded to Norfolk, 
and visited, in the course of my journey, seve- 
ral places which even to this day, although 
in ruins, revive recollections of the noble Po- 
cahontas. The banks of James River are 
hilly, and covered with bushes and trees al- 
most to the water's edge. Here and there 
may be seen a few Negro-plantations : their 
miserable huts, at small distances from each 
other, continue along the shore. Of James 
Town, the first English settlement in the 
United States, no trace is discernible, and of 

A A 2 


the many hospitable mansions of which Vir- 
ginia formerly boasted, very few are left. A 
traveller, bearing* in mind what this State once 
was, cannot help viewing- every object with 
interest. From remotest times, history re- 
presents its inhabitants as distinguished 
by a chivalrous spirit; and this feature, 
more and more developed in the course of 
events, is now perceptible in a tendency to 
aristocracy. I mean only with regard to 
manners — for in other respects the Virgi- 
nians are perfectly republican. During the 
revolutionary war, this State was not back- 
ward in sending her sons to fight the battles 
of the country : since then, it has furnished 
no fewer than four Presidents. In our times, 
Virginia still retains an important rank in the 
political relations of the Union, and Ameri- 
cans attach great hopes to her energy, in case 
of need. 

The city of Norfolk is situated on the east 
bank of the river Elizabeth, opposite to two 
small towns called Portsmouth and Gosport, 
the latter remarkable only as being a station 
for part of the United States' Navy. Norfolk 
is a seaport, carrying on some trade, but to 
no considerable extent. The chief branch of 
business consists in timber, from the interior 


of the country, suitable for naval purposes, 
and contracts for this article to no small 
amount are made with Government for the 
use of the fleet. About a mile from the city, 
on a point of land, a marine hospital has lately 
been established, which deserves to be visited 
by every traveller. 

The stag-e was at the door. Nine strangers, 
crowded together in the uncomfortable and 
heavy carriage, soon began to complain of 
the narrow space allotted to each for the con- 
venience of their legs. My travelling compa- 
nions and myself had, unfortunately, too much 
luggage, a circumstance that gave rise to a 
very animated debate between us and the 
owner of the stage ; but, on putting the ques- 
tion to the vote, we carried it nem. con. by 
paying a few dollars extra. At length we 

Norfolk might still be seen at a short dis- 
tance behind us, when one of the travellers 
called out that all the trunks and portman- 
teaus were unfastened, and that the least jolt 
of the coach would infallibly send them into 
the middle of the road. As the sky announced 
an instantaneous storm, threatening to soak 
all our carpet-bags, knapsacks, parcels, &c. 
our voices united in one common request, that 


the driver should immediately stop and look 
after them. He obeyed the mandate only in 
part, by pulling up his horses, adding* an 
observation still foreign to my ears, but 
with which I became more familiarized in my 
subsequent travels through the United States, 
particularly in the South and West, namely, 
" that, as to looking after the baggage, it 
was no business of his." This explanation 
informed each of us that he must henceforth 
be on the qui vive, and attend to his own pro- 
perty. In the midst of a drenching shower, we 
were obliged to alight, and fasten the trunks 
ourselves, standing ankle-deep in mud ; but to 
shelter them against the rain was entirely out 
of the question. They were left to their fate ; 
and I need not assure the reader that they 
were filled w^ith water before we arrived at 
our journey's end. 

Not far from Norfolk, is a very large marsh 
called The Dismal Swamp. The road led 
through only a corner of it, so that I cannot 
assert that I haveseen the whole of this swamp : 
but, were I to judge from what 1 did see, I 
should pronounce the Dismal Swamp to be 
one of the most desolate places in the world. 
Nature appeared really in mourning. The 
marshy soil was every where covered with 


bushes ; and here and there cypresses, symbols 
of death, raised their gloomy heads. The 
ground was so saturated with moisture, that 
each footstep of the horses made a deep impres- 
sion, which was immediately filled with water. 
Trees, half-decayed, lay about in all direc- 
tions, and millions of frogs were leaping spor- 
tively across them, at the same time rending 
the air with their discordant notes. In some 
places I discovered a kind of grass or weeds 
growing, but weak and unhealthy. Branches 
of trees formed a haunt for hawks, falcons, 
and eagles, which diverted themselves by fly- 
ing from tree to tree, whilst uttering shrill 
and deafening screams. The air itself was 
damp and cold. In the interior of this swamp, 
there are said to be several dry spots, where 
runaway Negroes have taken up their resi- 
dence, and where they spend the remainder 
of a miserable life. Many are born there, but 
more leave their bones behind in this marshy 
and pestilential soil. Some time ago, a re- 
gular hunt took place after the deserters ; 
but the inaccessibility of the spot to persons 
unaccustomed to this labyrinth proved an 
insurmountable obstacle, and prevented the 
pursuers from penetrating into its inner- 
most recesses. Many of the unfortunate 


fugitives were, liovvever, killed, or made pri- 
soners : others hardly ever venture out of 
their hiding-places, and, rather than lose life 
and liberty, pass their time in the greatest 
misery, with but a scanty subsistence. It is 
thought that but few now remain in this 

A canal has lately been cut in this neigh- 
bourhood, which unites Chesapeak Bay and 
Albemarle Sound, in North Carolina. Nor- 
folk expects to derive great advantages from 
this communication, and time will show whe- 
ther these anticipations are well founded or 

Not far from a small place called Somerton, 
we entered the territory of North Carolina. 
The road was execrable, and consisted of 
deep sand, and bottomless holes, and here 
and there artificial corduroy roads, generally 
in so indifferent a condition, that they drew 
down the severest animadversions of the tra- 
vellers. By way of change, streams and 
rivulets were sometimes crossed by swim- 
ming, and the numberless rivers in ferry- 
boats, or rather canoes, which invariably 
filled with water before we reached the oppo- 
site shore. Bridges were, no doubt, seen, and 
even frequently ; but their dilapidated state 


made it more hazardous to traverse them 
than to take the chance of fording- the 

The country presents a very monotonous 
appearance, consisting* only of plains and 
woods. No mountains are visible ; even hills 
are scarce. The wild forests seem to be end- 
less, and sometimes reminded me of those in 
the North of Sweden, with the exception that 
American woods are composed of a variety of 
trees, such as oak of different kinds, cypresses, 
cedars, pines, &c., which is not the case with 
us. The soil is very poor, being chiefly sand, 
with a small proportion of good earth. The 
scattered plantations in these ill-favoured 
parts bore evident marks of the poverty of 
their owners; and, on more than one occasion, 
I felt persuaded that the poor condition of 
the people of North Carolina had not been 
overrated. All the houses near the roads 
deserve no other name than that of huts. 
Built of the trunks of trees, the branches of 
which are not even cut off, laid loosely on the 
top of each other, so that the ends only join, 
they afford but a wretched shelter against 
the inclemency of the weather. On the out- 
side of these huts is a chimney made of brick, 
which gives a still more miserable appearance 


to the building. F^ences are seen in abund- 
ance ; and every cultivated field has its inclo- 
sure. The planks or stakes are laid horizon- 
tally on each other, without being bound or 
nailed, and form angles with other ])lanks 
also laid horizontally, thus making a solid sup- 
port for the whole. Before many of the dirty 
houses, numberless peacocks strutted in full 
parade, displaying their plumes of all colours. 
They are raised in unusual numbers in this 
State, and the people carry on a kind of 
traffic, though not a very profitable one, with 
them, the price of such a bird being only one 

The interior of the houses was destitute of 
every kind of comfort. In many places no 
furniture was to be seen. Instead of candles, 
splinters of lighted wood, carried in the 
hand, were used, and, to my great surprise, 
negligently thrown by the Negroes into a 
corner of the room, close to the wooden walls. 
Drinking-glasses did not belong to the cata- 
logue of necessaries in these habitations ; 
goat-horns served as a substitute. But even 
these may prove acceptable, if the traveller 
has but a sufficient supply to fill them, which 
was not the case in the parts of the country 
which I visited. 


Fields and meadows were scarce and far 
from rich, so tliat cattle looked poor and lean, 
and milk could not be obtained for several 
days. These circumstances may account for 
the continual emigration from North Carolina 
to Georgia and Alabama. On the following- 
day, I met numbers of poor people on their 
way to these States, after having converted 
their little all into tangible property. They 
travelled mostly on foot, sometimes on horse- 
back or on mules, accompanied by a waggon, 
covered with canvass, and containing, besides 
women and children, some miserable articles 
of household furniture. At night they bi- 
vouacked in the woods around a large fire, 
which formed a singular contrast with the 
sombre appearance of the forest. 

Many of these emigrants return to their 
former homes poorer than they left them. 
Their scanty resources are generally insuffi- 
cient for the purchase of good land in Georgia 
and Alabama. Obliged to be satisfied with 
inferior lots, mostly in the hands of specula- 
tors, they soon perceive that the soil is not 
better than what they have left behind. Dis- 
appointed in their expectations, they return 
to their place of nativity, after having spent 
their little property in travelling and other 


expences, and gained nothing but woful ex- 
perience. This is a sad picture, but it will 
be easily recognized by any one who has 
visited North Carolina. 

I saw very few living creatures on the road, 
as the number of travellers is very inconsider- 
able ; both men and women journey on horse- 
back. But, independently of these, I met 
scarcely any one except a Negro now and 
then, who, half naked and sleepy, was wan- 
dering in the woods. A white pedestrian I 
never observed during my whole journey 
through the Southern States. Near a church, 
situated in the midst of a wood, not far dis- 
tant from the road, where divine service was 
performing when I happened to pass, I 
counted not fewer than a thousand saddle- 
horses, besides a few sulkies, a species of 
vehicle used all over the United States. All 
the horses were tied to trees, but not a crea- 
ture was in attendance to look after them. 

Indian corn was chiefly cultivated in these 
parts. Cotton-fields are not seen till you 
approach Fayetteville. Stumps and dead 
trunks of trees are invariably left standing in 
the fields, and give a wild appearance even to 
cultivated Nature. One night, our road led 
directly through a field of Indian corn, covered 


with the withered and dry stalks of a former 
crop, the whole looking as if it had been the 
prey of a great conflagration. The objects 
appeared so dark and gloomy, that it influ- 
enced, in some measure, the spirit of the tra- 
vellers, and for a while we suspended our 
contemplations. Forests of lifeless trunks 
and half burned stumps met the eye in every 
direction ; and in the moonlight these might 
be taken for a phalanx of ghosts. We pulled 
up the windows of the coach, and continued 

The heat and confined air obliged me at 
length to let down a window, and, to my 
great surprise, I suddenly perceived an exten- 
sive field, perfectly white, as if covered with 
snow. The first impulse was that snow had 
actually fallen, and the lateness of the season 
rendered this supposition probable ; but the 
day had been remarkably warm, and the 
atmosphere was still rather oppressive, two 
circumstances little in harmony with a fall of 
snow. The whole seemed like a dream. 
Rubbing my eyes, I attempted to awake one 
of my neighbours, with a view to point out 
the singularity of the scene. Hc^ did not 
answer my appeal, and his oppressed respira- 
tion removed all doubt as to his being under 


the uncontrollable power of Morpheus, alike 
unable to enjoy the beauty of a fine land- 
scape, and to answer questions. My curiosity 
was therefore highly excited, without being 
able to satisfy it ; and it was only after the 
lapse of a few hours that I was informed that 
the snow-covered ground, as I fancied it, was 
nothing but a cotton-field, the first I had ever 

Cotton grows on short stalks, in pods or 
balls, which burst, like the buds of flowers, 
when the cotton is ripe. In the spring it is 
planted as thickly as possible ; but, as soon 
as the plants grow up a little, the field is 
cleared of weeds, and they are left at 
a certain distance from each other. The 
flower is yellow, red, or white, according to 
the quality of the cotton ; the best is snow- 
white, and in appearance like the lily. Like 
the sunflower, it follows the direction of the 
sun : in two days it generally withers. Ne- 
groes are employed in gathering and col- 
lecting the cotton in baskets, after which it 
is put into an iron machine in the form of a 
wheel, worked by horses, which separates the 
cotton from the seed. In this wheel there 
are several parallel spouts, set with small 
teeth, before which the cotton is laid, and by 


the motion of the wheel it is drawn between 
them, and then passes through the sponts till 
the seed is completely separated from it. 

The cotton is now received into another 
wheel, also worked by horses, which cleanses 
it from every species of impurity by means 
of fine brushes placed within it. A press is 
afterwards employed to pack it into bales, 
and in this state it is sent to market. In 
many places it is usual to manure the fields 
with the seed not used for sow^ing- ; but of 
late years experience has taught the planters 
to set a higher value on it, as it contains 
a considerable quantity of oil, which is ex- 
tracted by pressure, and is suitable both 
for burning and painting. This oil may, in 
the course of years, become an additional 
source of wealth to the planters. 

At length, late in the evening of the third 
day, I arrived at Fayetteville, a small town 
in North Carolina, which may be said to have 
seen its best days. It owes its origin to a 
certain period of the last war, when the En- 
glish were stationed in every direction off the 
coast, and all commerce with the interior was 
carried on through this place. Considerable 
capital was soon brought into play ; and from 
an insignificant spot it gradually rose into a 


town of some consequence. But a conflagra- 
tion of unusual violence unfortunately checked 
this prosperous career, and, on the 29th 
of May, 1831, reduced to a heap of ruins a 
town which it had taken a number of years 
to erect. By this sad calamity more than 
seven hundred houses were consumed, and 
the loss was estimated at nearly a million 
and a half of dollars. Strenuous efforts 
are making by the sufferers to rebuild the 
town ; but the dwelling's are scattered, and 
means are wanting to restore Fayetteville — 
at least for years to come — to its former 

On the following day, about noon, I de- 
parted in another stage, determined not to 
stop until I reached Charleston. I found 
the country of the same character as to the 
north of Fayetteville : plain, woody, and 
sandy, it possessed the same features as the 
former, with the sole difference that swamps 
occurred very frequently, and rendered the 
journey any thing but pleasant, if not dan- 
gerous. This was particularly the case on 
the frontiers of North and South Carolina, 
between two small places called Lumberton 
and Marion, where the coach was continually 
in water, which rose in many places above 


the axletrees, threatening- more than once to 
invade the coach itself. Nothing is more 
common, after heavy rains, than for the water 
to penetrate into the carriage ; and passen- 
gers, to avoid drowning, are then obliged to 
have recourse to the roof. We luckily escaped 
this inconvenience, although continually on 
the alert to effect a retreat through the win- 
dows ; but our trunks and portmanteaus 
were completely soaked. What particularly 
contributed to render this journey hazardous 
was, the constant crossing of rivers, inter- 
secting the country in every direction. Many 
of these streams are very extensive, especially 
the Great Pedee and Santee, both of vvhich 
in Europe would be considered large. The 
banks of these rivers, as well as those of the 
minor streams, Black River, Lynch River, &c., 
are of a very pleasing aspect, and afford a 
great relief to the eye, previously fatigued 
with the sight of swamps and plains of sand. 
Covered with wood to the water's edge, they 
rise and fall in a thousand different undula- 
tions, thereby intercepting the prospect in 
many places. 

In passing Great Pedee, we embarked in a 
real Indian canoe, made of a single tree, 
which contained five passengers, the driver, 

VOL. I. B B 


a boatman, and a quantity of lug^gag-e and 
mail-bags. The current was so strong*, and 
the boat so heavily laden, that the least mo- 
tion by any member of the company would 
infallibly have precipitated the whole into 
the stream. But the boatman, who never 
ceased recommending us to preserve the 
equilibrium, steered us safely to the opposite 
shore, although guiding the bark with only 
one oar, which he used so dexterously, as to 
avoid several shoals and rocks in the middle 
of the river. 

The following night I effected another pas- 
sage, not less perilous than the preceding: 
between Georgetown and Charleston there 
are two rivers, the Great and Little Santee, 
united by a canal. The country between 
them is nothing but a swamp, so excessively 
low as to be inundated by the water of the 
streams. When this is the case, no traveller 
can possibly pass, unless he chooses to pro- 
ceed by the canal. In the day-time this is 
attended with no inconvenience; but the ne- 
cessity of effecting the passage in the darkest 
part of the night, still more obscured by a 
dense fog, and this too in a ferry-boat, the 
bottom of which was so decayed that the 
water rushed in every minute, deprived me, 


I candidly confess, of all the gratification T 
should otherwise have derived from the sight 
of so characteristic a landscape. Two Negroes, 
the one lame, the other with but one arm, 
formed the complement of rowers. 

On the arrival of the stage, they were roused 
from a sound slumber, and appeared to be 
half asleep during the whole passage ; indeed 
I fancied at times that I perceived symptoms 
of snoring : but, whether this was founded in 
reality or the effect of imagination, I will not 
pretend to determine, for they never dis- 
continued rowing until the steersman, also of 
the African race, in a loud voice informed 
them that we had arrived at the place of 
destination. To be able, however, to steer 
the course in the dark, across large rivers, and 
through a narrow canal, required no ordinary 
acuteness on the part of the steersman, how- 
ever experienced and well acquainted with the 
localities. The dense fog prevented him from 
distinguishing any object at a greater dis- 
tance than a boat's length from us, and the 
unsteady reflection of the evening star in the 
water was the only mark which guided and 
enabled him to calculate the direction he 
ought to follow. This calculation proved cor- 
rect in every respect, and we at length reached 

B B 2 


the opposite shore without the slightest acci- 

The country south of Fayetteville to the 
vicinity of Georgetown is poor, and regarded 
by agriculturists as unfit for cultivation. 
The rich soil generally found in the West- 
ern States induces numbers of farmers from 
parts less fertile to resort thither, and to 
leave all land neglected which requires many 
hands and more labour, on account of its 
poverty. The price of land in this part has, 
in consequence, considerably decreased, no 
more than forty or fifty cents being paid for 
an acre covered with wood. If I may credit 
what was said, I should be inclined to think 
that the soil is not so indifferent but that it 
might, by industry and perseverance, be ren- 
dered productive. I believe, moreover, that, 
with very little exertion, the swamps might 
be drained, and converted into fruitful fields. 
In this conclusion I am the more confirmed, 
when I take into account the statements of 
experienced and respectable persons in the 
neighbourhood, who admitted that the sand 
is merely on the surface, and that, if the 
furrows in ploughing the fields were made 
deep enough, a large proportion of good earth 
would be thrown up, capable of producing 


Indian corn, potatoes, &,c. The population 
in these parts consists chiefly of the offspring 
of emigrant Highlanders. 

The forests are of great extent ; to the 
traveller they appear endless. Of the different 
kinds of wood with which they abound, oak 
appeared to me to prevail ; of this species, 
the varieties were very numerous and such 
as I had never seen, being distinguished by a 
trifling difference in the shape of the leaves. 
Near Georgetown, the well-known live oak, 
so suitable for naval purposes, grows in great 
abundance. It is only found near the sea- 
shore ; the leaves are slender and pointed. 
There is, also, in the Southern States, a 
species of fir, which is peculiar to this part of 
the country. To the age of three years it is 
one of the most splendid plants that can be 
seen, and would be a real ornament to any 
park. The trunk is perfectly straight, with a 
thick crown at the top ; the whole resembling 
a young palm-tree. It is usual in the spring 
to set fire to the brushwood, which has sprung 
up in the preceding year, with a view to 
make room for grass and to give it additional 
vigour ; this operation, however, destroys 
great quantities of young firs, and oak-trees 
take their place. The same thing occurs if a 


number of the latter are cut down : firs in 
turn rise on their ruins, precisely on the same 
spot. Besides these principal species of trees, 
I saw considerable quantities of evergreen 
hollies, with their red berries, cypresses, lau- 
rels, junipers, &c. all intermingled in the 

In the course of this journey, I had frequent 
opportunities of seeing rattlesnakes, which 
are found in great abundance in the Northern 
woods. Their bright eyes sparkled among 
the bushes, which concealed every other part 
of them from view ; but they were generally 
discovered, when stretched out on the ground, 
taking the benefit of a sunny day. In this 
attitude, they are absolutely harmless, as 
they cannot bite till they have formed a ring 
or circle, thus affording ample time for escape. 
The most dangerous enemies of this venom- 
ous animal are deer and hogs : the former 
never come near unless it is stretched out, 
when, with the rapidity of lightning, they 
jump on its head, and trample it with their 
fore-feet till life is extinct. The hogs again 
give the snake a regular chase ; it does not 
possess sufficient strength to penetrate their 
hard hides, and vainly diffuses its poison over 
the bristles : the chase is never given up till 


the snake is dead, when they devour it in the 
most voracious manner. Another species of 
snakes, called moccasins, is often found in the 
woods : they are larger than the rattlesnake, 
equally venomous, but more dangerous to 
njan on account of their giving no warning 
before they bite. Many remedies for the bites 
of these animals have been tried, but none 
have yet effected a cure, or saved the life of 
the patient. The Indians pretend to be ac- 
quainted with a method of healing the bites 
of poisonous serpents; and experience has 
shown that, if any thing can effect a recovery, 
it is their simple application. The following 
is one of their remedies. Take an herb called 
gold of the earth, or golden rod, lay part of it 
fresh on the wounded part, make a kind of tea 
of the remainder, and let the patient frequently 
drink of it. Administer afterwards a copious 
dose of salts, and then a few drops of turpen- 
tine. The slough will, by degrees, assume 
the colour of the snake, and drop off of it- 
self. This remedy is said to have been very 
successful : recovery, however, is hopeless, 
if the snake in biting has punctured a vein. 
No human power can then rescue the victim 
from death ; to assuage the excruciating 
pain is the only thing that can be accomplished. 

376 THE rattlesnake's masterpiece. 

Many experiments have been made to dis- 
cover the best means of defence against ve- 
nomous serpents. I heard a farmer in North 
Carohna assert that if the hands are rubbed 
with an herb called the rattlesnake master- 
piece, or the root of it is kept in the pocket, 
any snake will drop down as if dead, and 
writhe in excessive pain, like a worm in an 
anthill. I could not ascertain what herb it 
was, nor do I know if he meant the leaves of 
white ash, which are said to have a wonderful 
effect on the rattlesnake. The following' ex- 
periment was lately made ; and, as I enter- 
tain no doubt of the authenticity of the state- 
ment, I here report it. A few sportsmen 
were chasing a deer, and happened to fall in 
with a rattlesnake. Having heard of the 
effect of the ash leaf on this animal, they 
hastened to cut off a couple of branches 
from trees within their reach, one of ash, the 
other of sugar-maple. Armed with these, 
they approached the snake, which imme- 
diately prepared for battle, hissing with rage. 
I will finish the story in the words of the 
narrator himself: 

*' I first stretched forth the branch of the 
ash, and rubbed the body of the animal gently 
with the leaves. It immediately lowered its 


head to the ground, stretched itself out, in- 
stead of coiling itself up, fell back ward, twisted, 
and threw itself into every possible attitude 
except that of a circle, and appeared to be in 
the greatest agony. Satisfied with the trial, 
I laid the ash aside : as soon as the snake 
perceived this, it again rose, and resumed the 
same threatening posture as before. I now 
held out the other branch. In an instant it 
threw itself upon it, concealed its head among 
the leaves, and drew back, and re-commenced 
the attack, advancing its whole body with the 
celerity of an arrow. After repeating this se- 
veral times, I suddenly changed the branch, 
and again rubbed it gently across the back 
with the ash leaves. No sooner had I done this 
than it fell backward a second time, and no 
more ventured to look at its enemy. Curious 
to see what effect blows from this weapon 
might have upon it, I struck several times at 
its slippery body, expecting to see the animal 
foaming with rage : but the blows did not 
produce the effect I anticipated ; they only 
served to increase its uneasiness and pain. 
At each blow, the snake buried its head as 
deep as it could in the sand, as if to find a 
passage under the earth, and thus escape its 


But I must resume my narrative of the 
journey to Charleston. Towards evening", 
the day following our departure from Fayette- 
ville, we arrived at a small place called 
Georgetown, on the river Great Pedee, not 
far from the sea. It was here I first disco- 
vered a rice-field, which appeared to me to 
look like one of oats ; the plant itself is not 
unlike the latter. All rice-fields are in low 
situations, and require to be often under 
water, which circumstance occasioning great 
dampness, the neighbourhood of the plan- 
tations is extremely unhealthy, and often 
fatal to the miserable slaves, who are frequently 
obliged to stand up to the middle in water. 

The stage stopped at a distance of about two 
miles from Charleston, where the passengers 
embarked in a boat, rowed by six Negroes, 
the merriest slaves, without exception, I ever 
saw. The numberless anecdotes with which 
they amused us proved sufficiently that these 
beings, at least, were not unhappy under the 
yoke of thraldom. Their songs continued till 
the boat landed us at the port, after having 
passed the bay between Charleston and the 
sea, which forms the entrance to the city. 
The sun had just risen, when I found myself 
in the streets of Charleston. 


Le meilleur de tous les plans de finances est de depenser peu, et 
le meilleur de tous les impots est le plus petit. 


Charleston is the second city in size in the 
Southern States ; it counted in 1830 a popu- 
lation of thirty thousand two hundred and 
eighty-nine souls. Its advantageous situa- 
tion on an isthmus between two rivers, the 
Ashley and Cooper, at a small distance from 
their outlet into the sea, places it in the rank 
of the most considerable city for commerce, 
with the exception of New Orleans, south of 
the Potomac, a rank which I firmly believe it 
will continue to occupy for a long period. 
Viewed on the map, the city bears a strong 
resemblance to New York, but in reality there 
is no comparison. Charleston, closely exami- 
ned, has an old and dilapidated appearance, 


whereas New York is quite the reverse : there, 
every thing- bears the stamp of freshness. 
What contributes to give Charleston a dif- 
ferent feature is the piazzas and balconies at- 
tached to every house ; and these, in addition 
to the trees planted in the streets, called Pride 
of India, soon inform the visiter that he is 
arrived in a southern latitude. 

The houses are chiefly of brick, and plas- 
tered : heat, heavy showers, and dust, have, 
however, taken off the plastering in many 
places, so that the buildings have a very 
shabby appearance. This was particularly 
observable in the churches, the exterior of 
which indicated only misery and destruction. 
Almost every house has a garden adjoining, 
filled with flowers, shrubs, and trees, peculiar 
to these warm regions ; many flowers were in 
full bloom, although the month of December 
was at hand. Few streets are paved ; they 
are consequently in a very bad state after the 
least shower ; but, generally speaking, they 
are regularly planned and tolerably wide. 

The climate of Charleston, in winter, is as 
pleasant and healthy as it is oppressive and 
dangerous in summer. During my residence 
there in the last month in the year, the most 
delightful summer heat continued uninter- 


ruptedly, so that great-coats were absolutely 
useless : many of the principal inhabitants 
have never used these superfluous articles. 
At certain periods, however, the city is con- 
sidered extremely unhealthy : those who can 
afford it then remove to the plantations, or 
visit the Northern States. Even a residence 
at the former places is, during the great sum- 
mer heat, attended with attacks of dangerous 
fevers, attributable to vapours rising from 
the rice-fields and swamps : the rich planters 
then lose no time in returning to the city. 
Thus, removals take place from the beginning 
to the end of the year, to avoid infection. 

The principal exports from this city are 
cotton and rice, immense quantities of which 
are shipped for Europe. The well known Sea 
Island cotton is chiefly exported from this 
place; it brings considerable sums into the 
State. Nothing but bales of the latter article 
and barrels of rice are seen in the lower part 
of the city ; the streets and quays are some- 
times so filled with them, that the agility of a 
sailor is required to effect a passage. The 
ear is continually annoyed with sounds pro- 
claiming the price of these articles, and mer- 
chants and dealers are incessantly engaged in 
drawing samples from the bales, for the pur- 


pose of trying the goodness of the article, by 
pulling out long threads between their fingers, 
or dipping their hands into the barrels of rice, 
to examine its whiteness and purity. This 
branch of commerce has been for a long time, 
and still continues to be, a source of great 
wealth to the merchants of Charleston : but 
its prosperity is not proportionate to that of 
other cities. Many reasons have been as- 
signed for this stationary condition, and 
among others, the vicinity of the rival city of 
Savannah, which possesses the advantage of a 
water-communication with the interior of the 
country, and has consequently a locality pre- 
ferable to that of Charleston. To remedy this 
disadvantage, a railroad has lately been com- 
menced between the latter city and Augusta, 
from which beneficial results are expected. 
This railroad was expected to be finished the 
following year, and I have yet to learn whe- 
ther the anticipations so fondly entertained 
have been realised or not. 

St. Andrew's Society is a benevolent insti- 
tution, having for its object the education of 
poor children. It has branches in all parts 
of the Union, and is reported, much to the 
credit of its members, to do a great deal of 
good. It has a la?'ge building in Charles- 


ton, where public assemblies and meetings 
are held. 

I attended one of the latter, convoked to 
pay a tribute of respect to the memory of Sir 
Walter Scott, the account of whose death had 
but recently reached the city. Several orators, 
natives of South Carolina, had here an op- 
portunity of giving- specimens of innate elo- 
quence. The extraordinary talents of the 
deceased as a poet and novelist were repre- 
sented in colours which soon drew the most 
enthusiastic applause from all parts of the 
hall, and clearly evinced a disposition on the 
part of the audience warmly to contribute to 
the proposed subscription for raising, in some 
conspicuous place in the city, a marble bust 
in commemoration of the Scottish bard. 

Among the speakers, none produced so 
powerful an effect on the audience as General 
Hayne. This remarkable personage, the 
boast of his native city, has lately played an 
important part during the eventful period of 
the Nullification project, and is now Governor 
of South Carolina ; he is in the prime of life, 
with the vigour of youth and a seductive 
eloquence, and will always prove a dangerous 
antagonist to any enemy who may attack him. 
His language is pleasing, but vehement. 


Frequently, when the subject is interesting, 
he raises his voice to an astonishing pitch, 
and thunders in the hall till all the members 

As a public speaker, General Hayne is 
exactly the reverse of what he is in small and 
familiar circles ; there, he is hardly to be 
recognized. The violent declaimer, whose 
looks, like the thunders of Jove, breathed 
only fire and flame, is the mildest and most 
modest of men in society. His voice there 
might be taken for that of a diffident youth ; 
and his eyes, which at other times seem to 
threaten a wdiole community, are fixed on the 
ground. It appears as if the oratorical chair 
produced a magic effect on a man naturally 
mild, and had the power of converting, at 
certain periods, the peaceable citizen into 
an ambitious military chieftain. Generally 
adored by the State over which he rules, and 
admired for his talents even by those opposed 
to him in politics, Hayne is one of the greatest 
men now living in America, and will one day, 
no doubt, shine in the page of history. 

At this period, the attention of the whole 
Union was directed to the State of South 
Carolina. A voice was there heard, whose 
threatening language, like a black cloud, the 


precursor of thunder, spread over the horizon, 
and chilled the blood of many an aged man. 
Numbers of deep-thinking statesmen had, 
undoubtedly, predicted a similar explosion of 
discontent in the Southern States, particularly 
in South Carolina, excited by what was 
called " The American System," which con- 
sisted in affording protection to home manu- 
factures, and encouraging internal improve- 
ments, at the expence of trade ; but, by skilful 
management, this explosion had for a while 
been checked, and it was hoped that the first 
impulse in the South had somewhat abated, 
when, all of a sudden, accounts arrived that a 
Convention had been convoked at Columbia, 
the capital of South Carolina, the members 
of w^hich assumed the name of Nullifiers. 

This party, in a mass, showed at once a 
hostile attitude to the Federal Government. 
Its first step was to issue a proclamation, 
dated in November, 1832, in which the mem- 
bers declare, ''that, as Congress, by its unjust 
and unconstitutional tariffs of the 19th May, 
1828, and the 14th July, 1832, has overstepped 
the power conferred on it by the people, we, 
the inhabitants of the State of South Carolina, 
in Convention represented, declare and ordain 
that these acts, tariffs, or laws, are null and 

VOL. I. c c 


void : that, from the 1st of February next, the 
people are absolved from paying any duties, 
and that all those who hold any civil or mili- 
tary office in the said State must, within a cer- 
tain period, swear that they will obey, execute, 
and defend, these regulations. And we declare, 
moreover, that we are firmly determined to 
abide by, and carry into effect, the tenor of 
this proclamation — that we will not suffer 
any act of violence to be exercised against 
us by the Government of Washington : that 
we will consider any violent aggressions as 
attempts to force South Carolina to secede 
from the Union ; and that the people of this 
State, in the event of secession, will consider 
itself free from all political connection with 
the other sister States of the Union, and 
organize a government of its own, and act in 
the character of a free and independent 

Proclamations were, moreover, issued by 
the same Convention to the people of South 
Carolina, as well as to those of other States. 
In the first, it was attempted to be proved 
that the new tariff, adopted by the Congress 
of 1832 as law, to take effect in March 1833, 
was altogether unjust and contrary to the 
principles of a free government : that, if car- 


ried into execution, it would seal the fate of 
South Carolina, by reducing it to poverty and 
misery. The following are briefly the argu- 
ments adduced : 

" The Government of the United States is 
altogether what is called a Federal Govern- 
ment — an alliance between different Sove- 
reigns. The Federal Constitution, again, is 
a compact, a confederation, a union, by which 
so many independent States have mutually 
agreed to exercise their sovereign power at 
certain periods, when they are all equally 
interested in the subject under discussion ; as, 
for instance, when war, peace, commerce, 
foreign negotiations, and Indian treaties, are 
in question : on all other occasions they may 
may act separately. Such is the true mean- 
ing of the Union. For the sake of conveni- 
ence, a common agent has been appointed : 
this agent is the Federal Government, which 
represents the confederated States, and exe- 
cutes their will. Its power is perfectly deri- 
vative : it is a political corporation, which, 
like other political corporations, derives its 
authority from another source — namely, the 
States. But, if the States have invested this 
Government with power, they may also with- 
draw it. All hereditary sovereignty rests, 

c c 2 


therefore, with the States ; it is only a moral 
obligation, which they voluntarily imposed 
on themselves, and certainly not a want of 
independence, which prevents them from 
exercising' this authority. 

" By the Declaration of Independence, 
South Carolina became a free and independ- 
ent State, and, as such, she has a right to 
exercise the same acts as any Sovereign. 
As, in all alliances between independent 
princes, each party has a right to decide on 
the best means of obtaining indemnity for 
injuries received, so it belongs, in the pre- 
sent contest between South Carolina and 
the Federal Government, exclusively to the 
former, by delegates duly appointed by the 
people, and in Convention assembled, to 
determine whether the federal compact is 
infringed, and what measures the State ought 
to resort to for its re-union. South Carolina, 
therefore, neither can nor will yield to the 
Federal Government, still less to the Supreme 
Court of the United States — a mere tool of 
the Government, itself only a tool of the 
States — a right which belongs to her as a 
free State, and without which the whole 
sovereignty would only be a bubble — an 
empty name. 


** Can that Government be called free, which 
levies taxes with impunity, in order to en- 
courage one branch of industry to the detri- 
ment of others, if such a tax is not actually 
prompted by some great and inevitable public 
call ? Other nations appear disposed to re- 
move restraints on commerce ; our Congress, 
on the contrary, is determined to lay every 
impediment on the importation of the very 
goods which we barter for the produce of the 
South, and thus throw the whole weight of 
taxation on this part of the Union. A people 
which has fought for liberty can suffer such 
wrongs no longer. With the last session of 
Congress, all hopes vanished of seeing justice 
guide the proceedings of the assembled repre- 
sentatives of the Confederation. One alterna- 
tive only remains for this State : it is, citizens, 
Resistance, not physical, but moral. It is a 
matter of indifference by what name it may 
be distinguished in the world — whether Nulli- 
fication, State interference. State Veto, or 
something similar; if it be only resistance 
against oppressive measures, it is the path 
which duty, patriotism, and self-defence, point 
out. And this resistance is even constitu- 
tional, for the act itself which prompts it is 
unconstitutional, and nullification was already 


considered constitutional by a particular com- 
mittee, appointed in 1798. 

" Yes, Government is aware of it, and will 
not venture by military interference to force 
this State into obedience. Such a step would 
only lead to disunion between the members 
of the Confederation : it is, besides, in oppo- 
sition to the spirit of the age. Look at En- 
gland, which has lately accomplished one of 
the gTcatest reforms ever recorded in her 
annals — a reform which her wisest statesmen 
would, ten years ago, have considered im- 
practicable without a civil war and great 
effusion of blood. The people are now every 
where enlightened, and this intellectual experi- 
ence obliges Governments to exercise reflexion, 
moderation. Citizens, our dispute w^ill be 
amicably adjusted, we are well persuaded, 
and nullification will consolidate instead of 
tearing asunder the Union. 

" But the die is cast ; we have solemnly de- 
clared our determination not to pay any taxes 
till abuses and grievances are redressed. 
Prepare yourselves, citizens, for the ensuing 
contest, and be ready to meet it as becomes 
free men. We call upon you by every thing 
that is sacred not to abandon the cause 
till we have obtained justice. Do your 


duty to your country, and leave the rest to 

In the last address again, namely to the 
people of the twenty-three other States, the 
Convention says — " No government has ever 
exercised greater violence than that now 
attempted by the Federal Government against 
South Carolina, by compelling it to purchase 
at an exorbitant price articles manufactured 
at home, instead of foreign ones at a cheap 
rate. This Government, originally formed to 
protect, improve, and extend commerce, has 
done more to destroy it than all land and sea- 
pirates ever could. 

" South Carolina, an agricultural State, whose 
commerce consists in bartering the produce 
of her soil for foreign manufactures, would, 
if trade were free, at least receive one-third 
more for her own commodities ; for the duties 
of about fifty per cent, now laid upon them 
amount annually to the sum of three millions 
of dollars, whilst the whole produce of cotton 
in the same State — and cotton is the chief 
article of exportation— does not exceed six 
millions. Let us suppose, for a moment, that 
another State, New Jersey, for instance, manu- 
factured the raw material to nearly the same 
amount, ought not both States to enjoy the 
same advantages? And yet is it so? The 


fifty per cent, duties fall only on South Caro- 
lina : this is not enough ; they are paid to 
protect the manufacturers of New Jersey, 
who are at last benefited by it. What right 
have the manufacturing States — for the Fede- 
ral Government is in our eyes only their tool 
— to prevent South Carolina from exchang- 
ing, directly or indirectly, the rich produce of 
her soil against such foreign goods as contri- 
bute principally to the wealth and prosperity 
of the inhabitants ? It cannot be assumed — 
for truth opposes this objection — that, by bar- 
tering our produce against cheap European 
manufactures, we injure any of the privileges 
of the home-manufacturers, although it would 
undoubtedly be more in accordance with their 
wishes if we bought their inferior goods at 
higher prices. 

" South Carolina is now upon the same foot- 
ing with these States as the Anglo-American 
Colonies were formerly with the mother-coun- 
try, with this difference only, that we suffer 
infinitely more than our ancestors. Must we 
remain indifferent spectators to this violence, 
and patiently give up an inheritance sealed 
with the blood of our forefathers ? A people 
who voluntarily submit to oppression, and 
know that they are oppressed, deserve to be 
slaves : history proves that such a people in- 


variably find a tyrant. A tyrant has never 
yet made slaves; but a slavish disposition in 
the people produces tyrants. The smallest 
community animated with a free spirit never 
has a master. May, therefore, none of the 
other States in the Union be induced to take 
precipitate and violent steps, in the vain ex- 
pectation that South Carolina shall be found 
to waver in defending her rights and her 
liberties, merely because she has a population 
of only half a million instead of twenty ! 

" This dispute can be settled only by a mo- 
dification of the tariff, or by a general Con- 
vention of all the States. Should South Carolina 
be separated from the Union, other agricul- 
tural States, as well as some in the West, will 
follow her example, compelled by necessity. 
How is it possible, that Georgia, Mississippi, 
Tennessee, even Kentucky, can feel inclined to 
pay to the Northern States a tax of fifty per 
cent, on articles of consumption, merely for 
the privilege of being united to them, when 
they are able to obtain all their supplies from 
the ports of South Carolina, without paying 
one cent, in duties ? The secession of South 
Carolina will therefore entail a dissolution of 
the whole Union. 

*' Under these circumstances, we earnestly 
recommend that the other States may duly 


consider the step which they are taking. We 
do not believe that the Federal Government 
will venture by military force to maintain the 
tariff system ; but if, in spite of our warn- 
ing's, such an act of madness should be re- 
solved upon, we hereby most solemnly declare 
that this system of oppression shall never 
succeed in South Carolina until slaves only 
remain to submit to it. 

" Rather would we see the territory of the 
State converted into cemeteries of the free 
than inhabited by a population of slaves. 
These are the principles which animate us : 
true to them, we are determined to embrace 
the pillars of the temple of Liberty, and, if it 
must fall, let us be buried in the ruins !" 

Besides these two important documents, 
another was also issued by James Hamilton, 
governor of the State of South Carolina, who, 
n a message, dated Colombia, 27th Novem- 
ber, 1832, informs the Legislature that it is 
its duty to sanction the interposition of the 
revolutionary Convention ; recommends the 
placing the whole State upon a war footing, 
in order not to be unprepared in case of ag- 
gressicm ; but hopes at the same time to see 
an amicable adjustment of the dispute in ques- 
tion by the interference of the other States. 

Thus far had the NuUifiers advanced, when 


I arrived at Charleston. Every thing seemed 
to indicate that a revolution was on the eve 
of breaiving out. The excitement among* the 
hot-headed inhabitants was very great : a 
spark would have sufficed to set the whole 
in a flame. Of Union men there was also a 
considerable number, men who disapproved 
the principles of nullification, and who, partly 
from apprehension of a civil war, partly from 
attachment to the former state of things, en- 
deavoured to extinguish the wide-spreading 
conflagration ; but their efforts only served to 
irritate the minds of the others still more, and 
the flames of revolution continued to burn 
uninterruptedly in every corner of the State. 
Enthusiasm prevailed among women as well 
as among men ; the zeal of the former was 
so great, that many a maiden in South Caro- 
lina enjoined her lover to display his prowess 
before he should be permitted to press her 
hand to his lips, and receive a return to his 
ardent declaration of love. Societies were 
formed by these modern Amazons, the object 
of which was to keep up the enthusiasm of 
the men. At a public meeting held at Char- 
leston, during my residence in the city. Ge- 
neral Hayne delivered a very violent speech, in 
which the word disunion was used, when the 


ladies immediately testified their feelings by 
tokens of unbounded approbation. White 
handkerchiefs waved continually at every 
sentence pronounced by the orator, and their 
bright eyes flashed fire and flames. It would 
indeed have required but very little exertion 
to induce these patriotic heroines to take up 
arms and march for Washington, to besiege 
and take the Capitol and the White House ''^" 
by assault, and make the President himself 

All these threatening measures at length 
reached the ears of the Government at Wash- 
ington. But General Jackson, far from allow- 
ing himself to be intimidated, determined 
immediately, by prompt and energetic mea- 
sures, to destroy the weeds which began to 
grow up on the American soil. C( ngress had 
just commenced its sittings ; and, in a mes- 
sage from the President, dated 4th of Decem- 
ber, he informs the members of the circum- 
stance, in a manner which led to the belief 
that the threats had had some effect, or that 
the Federal Government was still undecided 
how to act. But this illusion was soon dis- 
pelled ; for, on the 10th of December following, 

• The White House in wliich the President resides at Wash- 

THE president's PROCLAMATION. 397 

a proclamation was issued, the language of 
which sounded like an alarm-bell, accom- 
panied by the unexpected annunciation, that 
Government had ordered several detachments 
of troops, both of the land and sea service, to 
enter the rebellious State. 

" A number of the most enlightened and dis- 
interested Statesmen," says the President, 
among other things, in his ])roclamation, 
"have invested Congress with power to regu- 
late the revenues of the State, and yet every 
State wishes to arrogate to herself the right of 
opposing it. These two prerogatives appear in 
direct opposition to each other ; yet it is con- 
tended that such an absurdity exists in the 
Constitution. I consider the attempt assumed 
by a State to annul any law duly enacted by the 
United States as irreconcileable withthe exist- 
ence of the Union, expressly contradicted by the 
Constitution, and contrary to the spirit and 
principles on which it is framed, and finally, 
destroying the great object for which it was 
intended. Complaints have been made that 
the laws do not operate equally. This may 
be said of all laws that have ever been, or 
ever will be, made. Man, in his wisdom, has 
never yet discovered any system of taxation, 
operating in an equal degree. If the unequal 

398 THE president's proclamation. 

operation of a law constitutes its unconstitu- 
tionality, and if all such laws can, for such 
reasons, be annulled by any State at pleasure, 
then indeed is the Federal Constitution unfit 
to make the least effort for its conservation. 
We have hitherto relied on it as the safest 
link of our Union. We have hailed it as a 
work framed by the soundest and wisest men 
in the nation. We have contemplated it with 
holy veneration, as the palladium of our liber- 
ties. Are we in error, fellow citizens, to attach 
this importance to the Constitution of our 
country? It forms a Commonwealth, but 
not a Confederation : its character is the 
same, whether effected l)y a convention among 
the States, or in any other way. Each State 
has, in union with other States, delegated so 
much power as is necessary to constitute a 
single nation ; and has, therefore, from that 
moment, relinquished the right of seceding 
from the Union ; for such a defection not only 
dissolves the ties of an alliance but destroys 
the concord of a nation. To advocate that 
any State may at pleasure secede from the 
Union is the same as to contend that the 
United States is not a nation. It would be a 
solecism to pretend that any part of the 
nation may break off all connexion with the 

THE president's PROCLAMATION. 399 

other parts, to their detriment and ruin, 
without committing a crime. Secession, hke 
every other revolutionary act, may be excu- 
sable, if oppression gives rise to it ; but to call 
it a constitutional right is to confound the 
meaning of the expressions. The laws of the 
United States must be obeyed. I have no 
unlimited control over them — my duties are 
clearly defined by the Constitution. Those 
who told you, fellow citizens, that you may, 
unmolested, obstruct the march of the laws, 
have deceived you — they could not be de- 
ceived themselves. They know that such a 
resistance must be repelled. Their object is 
secession from the Union ; but be not mis- 
guided — secession from the Union by vio- 
lence and with arms is treason. I conjure 
you, fellow citizens of the State in which I was 
born,* if you value the cause of liberty, to 
which you have devoted 3^our lives, if you 
value the tranquillity of your country, the 
lives of your principal citizens, pause ; with- 
draw from the archives of your State the 
dangerous edicts promulgated by the Con- 
vention — announce to its Members that all 
misfortunes are light compared to those which 
will follow a secession from the Union — de- 

General Andrew Jackson is a native of South Carolii 


clare that you will never fight under any 
other than the star-spangled banner — and 
that you wish to see your names go down 
untarnished to the latest posterity. You can- 
not destroy the Constitution of your country 
— you can only disturb its tranquillity, check 
its prosperity, eclipse its future fame for du- 
rability ; but tranquillity shall be restored : 
once more shall happiness and prosperity 
thrive in your native soil, and the dark stain 
which now disgraces the character of your 
State be expunged, and remain a perpetual 
stigma on the authors of these troubles." 

This Proclamation gained universal ap- 
plause : one voice alone was heard from the 
confines of Canada to the extremity of the 
Floridas. Even in South Carolina the peo- 
ple began to waver, and the chiefs of the 
new party paused for a while to recover 
themselves, and to consider whether they had 
not gone too far in their inferences as to 
State-rights to withdraw from the contest. 
The situation of the Nullifiers became still 
more alarming, when, shortly afterwards, 
a Bill passed Congress, authorising the Pre- 
sident to enforce the payment of duties, if not 
voluntarily liquidated: this Bill was after- 
wards called " The Bloody Bill," a name by 


which it is now generally known. In addi- 
tion, came the unexpected circumstance, that 
the neighbouring States, Virginia, North Ca- 
rolina, and Georgia, having nearly the same 
interests at stake as South Carolina, and on 
whose co-operation it had confidently calcu- 
lated, had disappointed its expectations, in- 
duced partly by jealousy, partly by other 
causes. In this posture of affairs, it was not 
strange that Messrs. Calhoun and M^Duffie, 
representatives of the Nullifiers at Washing- 
ton, acceded to the compromise which Mr. 
Clay, father of the manufacturing system, 
proposed, although they easily perceived that 
the reduction of duties suggested had rather 
the appearance of being' advantageous to the 
Southern Slave-States than was so in reality. 
The voice of Nullification became in the mean 
time weaker and weaker, till it died away 
altogether — at least it was never heard 
openly threatening a dissolution of the States. 
The party is, however, far from being dis- 
persed : like the snail, it has only retired 
within its shell. The day may yet come, 
when the progress of the doctrine of State- 
rights in the Southern parts may attract the 
serious attention of the Northern. 

VOL. I. D u 


Who could guess 

If ever more should meet those mutual eyes ? 


Ready to continue my journey, I embraced 
the opportunity of a steamboat going to Sa- 
vannah, to proceed thither. In calm weather, 
the steamers generally steer their course out- 
side the rocks : the trip is then extremely 
short and pleasant ; but, in winter, when rain 
and fog are the order of the day, the inland 
navigation, singular in its kind, is preferred. 
The country between Charleston and Savan- 
nah is everywhere intersected by rivers, 
which we either ascended or descended, ap- 
proaching close to the sea-coast, where a 
number of islands are situated, and form a 
barrier against the violence of the waves. It 
was, in fact, a scene full of variety ; sometimes 
we passed unhealthy swamps, then followed 
the shores of serpentine rivers ; again we 
were surrounded by extensive cotton and rice 


fields ; then a view of fertile islands presented 
itself; and at last we traversed various bays, 
where the rivers discharge themselves into 
the sea. Had the weather been fine, this trip 
would have afforded me many pleasant recol- 
lections ; as it was, I had an opportunity of 
attentively and with deep interest observing* 
the ever-changing scenery, varying from the 
highest state of cultivation and fertility to 
the desolation of swamps, with their accessory 
inanimation. It is on these islands, and all 
round the coast south of Savannah, that the 
Sea Island cotton, superior to any other, is 
cultivated ; the length of its threads distin- 
guishes it from ordinary cottons. The culti- 
vation of this particular variety is different 
from that of the short cotton : the sea air, it 
is supposed, has also no small influence on 
the quality. It fetches a much higher price 
than other cotton. 

The steamboat stopped on the following 
morning at a small town called Beaufort, to 
land and take on board passengers. Among 
the number, I observed a middle-aged man, 
accompanied by a young Negro woman, better 
dressed than any I had lately seen. Her com- 
panion was one of those despicable beings 
who traffic in human flesh : he had just before 

D D 2 


bought the unfortunate female from a planter, 
who, from some caprice or other, had sold her, 
although brought up in his own family, and 
a favourite with all its members on account 
of her honesty and remarkably handsome 
countenance. Before she left the shore, she 
bade, oppressed with grief, a tender farewell 
to her fellow-slaves ; and when at length she 
embraced her husband for the last time, she 
lost all power, and fell senseless in the arms 
of her unfeeling master, who kept incessantly 
repeating his orders to go on board. With 
the utmost exertion she was able to obey the 
command, and scarcely had she reached the 
deck before the steamboat started. Leaning 
against the side of the boat, she fixed her 
large black eyes on the home which was 
gradually disappearing before her, and waved 
her handkerchief as long as she could see her 
unhappy husband and the group of friends 
whom she left behind; but, when the winding 
of the river concealed from her view the 
dearest objects on earth, she contemplated in 
deep silence the waves agitated by the vessel. 
Presently her native place disappeared alto- 
gether, but she remained immoveable in the 
same attitude. Kven on our arrival at Sa- 
vannah, I observed her eyes fixed on the 


quarter where Beaufort was situated. Her 
countenance bore the stamp of perfect resigna- 
tion, and it was only when her eyes haj^pened 
to meet those of her new master that her un- 
easiness became visible. Accustomed to suffer 
and submit to sacrifices, this unhappy creature 
was probably no stranger to such trials and 
heart-rending scenes. 

Beside me, on deck, stood a rich planter 
from the interior of South Carolina. 1 had 
in the mornina* had a lonp' conversation with 



him on the subject of slavery, and could not 
help, by way of illustration of this abominable 
traffic, pointing out to him the case just men- 
tioned. " I do not deny," answered he, very 
deliberately, " that cases like this sometimes 
occur ; but, for the honour of humanity, they 
are not frequent. In my neighbourhood, 
every planter has agreed that, if he has a 
Negro married to a Negro woman belonging 
to another, and he wishes to get rid of the 
Negro or quit the vicinity, he will either offer 
the slave to the proprietor of the Negro 
woman, or will himself purchase the latter : 
in this case, the price is regulated by other 
planters. People begin," added he, " to show 
more feeling towards these unfortunate crea- 
tures than formerly, so much so, that ill-usage 


is hardly ever heard of. On the contrary, 
you will find many proprietors treating* their 
Negroes like their own children, and, partly 
by salutary admonition, partly by the distri- 
bution of religious tracts, endeavouring to 
make them sensible of simple moral truths, 
and thus gradually inculcating a deeper and 
more affectionate love for God and the Bible." 
Not far from Beaufort, I saw the palmetto 
tree growing in great luxuriance : all the 
banks were covered with it. This southern 
plant has, when young, a number of excre- 
scences on the trunk, which gradually dis- 
appear as it grows up, and is freed from 
branches. Like Italian fir, the crown of the 
palmetto is always green. The trunk is of so 
spongy a nature that a nail driven into it 
will not hold fast : it is, therefore, unfit 
for ship-buflding, but is used as piles in 
streams or lakes, for which it is particularly 
adapted. It is not liable to be worm-eaten, 
neither does it suffer the slightest injury from 
water. Round the trunk, rings or cracks are 
formed in the bark; these are said to indicate 
the age of the tree, each ring signifying a 
year. The leaves resemble fans, and possess 
great strength : seats of chairs, hats, baskets, 
&,c. are made of them. 



A little farther on, I arrived at a place 
formerly fortified by the Indians, the ramparts 
of which were made of oyster-shells. These 
truly characteristic fortifications were un- 
doubtedly erected long before the arrival of 
the English in these parts ; for history does 
not mention any occasion for which they 
were thrown up. The probability is, that 
they have been constructed by some Indian 
tribe, to serve as a bulwark against another. 
One of the redoubts is considerable, of great 
length, with aisles, and twelve feet in height. 
Its situation along the shore leads to the in- 
ference that it was from this side that attacks 
were expected. Considered as defences, they 
certainly possess very little interest ; but it is 
the material of which they are built that at- 
tracts the attention of travellers. How many 
millions of oysters must have perished in 
order to the erection of these redoubts ! 

The firstview of Savannah produces no very 
favourable impression, particularly if the tra- 
veller is unfortunate enough to alight at an 
hotel close to the landing-place ; but, upon 
nearer inspection, he cannot avoid pronouncing 
a fair opinion of the city, namely, that it is 
far from unpleasant, and that the houses of 
the inhabitants are ever open to strangers, to 


whom all the attentions of hospitality and 
politeness are shown. 

Savannah is situated on a ridge of sand, 
close to a river bearing the same name, which 
divides the States of South Carolina and 
Georg;ia. It is built in a square, with streets 
perfectly straight, and surrounded by walks, 
or boulevards, shaded by beautiful Pride of 
India trees. In that paft of the walk conti- 
guous to the river, as well as in the one below 
on the bank itself, all business is transacted, 
which consists chiefly in cotton shipments to 
Europe. In this particular spot, nothing is 
heard but conversations about the article ; 
bales are piled up in every store and at every 
corner. Whoever visits a merchant's office 
will find it filled with samples : if the clerks 
are occupied with correspondence, rest as- 
sured the subject is cotton. If the chief of a 
mercantile house is seen in conversation with 
any one, be equally sure that he is talking- 
about the price of cotton. But in the inte- 
rior of the town reigns perfect tranquillity ; 
nothing indicates that on the article of cotton 
alone depends the prosperity of Savannah. 
The houses are mostly of wood, and have bal- 
conies in the usual southern style. The un- 
paved streets resemble well-kept high roads. 


After heavy rains, or, more properly, drench- 
ing showers, it is customary to plough the 
ground, as in a field, with a view to render it 
sooner dry. This method of drying streets 
appeared rather new to a stranger ; but cer- 
tain it is that the object was accomplished 
with extraordinary rapidity, for the depth of 
the furrows enabled the sandy soil to imbibe 
the water much sooner than if it had been left 
to drain away of itself. 

Late in the evening, I again took my de- 
parture in a steamer, with the intention of 
proceeding up the river to Augusta, a distance 
of about two hundred miles, owing to the 
continual windings of the river, but which in 
a direct line would not exceed one hundred 
and fifty. The character of this stream is 
exactly similar to all those south of the 
Potomac ; crooked, sometimes winding for- 
ward, then turning back round a small pro- 
jecting point of land, which it often required 
nearly an hour to double, without gaining, in 
a straight line, more than a mile. The banks 
are low, in many places not higher than the 
surface of the water, and consist exclusively 
of swamps, in which both bushes and trees 
grow down to the water's edge, intercepting 
the prospect of the interior of the country. 


The woods appeared covered with a long- 
grey moss, which produced a dismal and 
desolate effect on the landscape, and reminded 
man that Death resided in these unhealthy 
regions. In ti uth, I perceived but few solitary 
habitations. The wretched scattered hovels 
that were visible were occupied only by mi- 
serable woodcutters, who seemed to prefer the 
alternativ e of death to the horrors of starva- 
tion in a healthier climate, or by Negroes, 
who are less liable to the fevers generated by 
unhealthy and marshy regions. In the brush- 
wood, near the banks, were myriads of wild 
ducks and wild turkeys. In summer, I am 
assured that large snakes and alligators also 
show themselves on sunny days. 

Of all the towns in the Southern States, 
none, with the exception of New Orleans, has 
a more agreeable exterior, and inspires the 
stranger at first with a stronger idea of com- 
fort and wealth than Augusta. Frequent 
fires have of late years not a little contributed 
to embellish the town, by the removal of old 
and the erection of new buildings ; but the 
principal cause of these improvements is to 
be traced to its active and flourishing trade. 
The situation of Augusta is in every respect 
advantageous : on the borders of two cotton- 


growing States, and lying close to a na- 
vigable river, down which produce is sent 
with the greatest facility to the large ex- 
porting towns, Charleston and Savannah, its 
locality is really enviable. Macon, it is true, 
divides the interior cotton trade with Augusta; 
but its share is small when compared with 
the latter, for Augusta receives produce not 
only from South Carolina, but from Georgia, 
whereas Macon only receives it from the latter 
State. The cotton stores in Augusta are 
well worth seeing. These immense buildings, 
not unlike arsenals at a distance, are planned 
on a scale which sufficiently shows the extent 
of the cotton trade. Many of them are spa- 
cious enough to contain as many as nine thou- 
sand bales. They are built in squares, with 
an open space in the centre : the sides are 
formed of stone sheds, roofed with tiles, and 
open towards the yard. 

The houses are of various classes, both in 
regard to materials and architecture; the 
greater part, however, are of brick, bearing 
undeniable evidence of the progress of the 
art. The streets are capable of many improve- 
ments : Augusta may, nevertheless, boast of 
a thoroughfare called Broad Street, surpassing 
in width any other in America. Its length is 


about two miles. When filled with loaded 
waggons, which is often the case in the winter 
months, the visiter forgets that he is in the 
centre of a region but lately a complete 
desert. Splendid coaches, elegant ladies, or 
perfumed dandies, are certainly not to be 
found ; but, notwithstanding the absence of 
these attributes of a large city, it is still 
lively. In this street are only to be seen de- 
cently dressed women, devoid of all coquetry, 
speculative merchants, loaded waggons, the 
size of which exceeded any thing I had as yet 
seen, close and shrewd farmers, saddle-horses 
without number, but no equipages. To this 
catalogue I must not omit to add the noise 
occasioned by heavy-footed mules, six of 
which are attached to every loaded cotton 
waggon, and the peculiar tones with which 
the Negro, mounted on one of these animals, 
drives his team. Generally, he has only one 
rein in the hand, fastened to one of the fore- 
most mules ; but, as this is at times insuffi- 
cient to give a proper direction to the heavy 
train, he is continually speaking to his beasts 
in a manner which they never fail to under- 
stand; and, in order to give a stronger im- 
pulse to his words, he adds a few cuts in the 
air with his whip, which have also a certain 


meaning', and they are as promptly obeyed as 

Opposite to Aug'usta, in the State of South 
CaroHna, is a small insignificant village, called 
Hamburg, also possessing a few cotton ware- 
houses : the inhabitants are striving very 
hard to share the palm with the rich and 
mighty neighbouring town. Their hopea seem 
particularly founded on the belief that the 
now nearly-finished railroad from Charleston, 
which terminates here, will give new life to 
their business, to the prejudice of Augusta. 
How far these expectations will be realized, 
when the railroad is completed and made 
available, 1 am not able to judge; but 1 cannot 
help entertaining some doubts on the score of 
any extraordinary rise of Hamburg, as long- 
as Augusta exists. 

A traveller intending to proceed hence by 
land to New Orleans is earnestly recom- 
mended to bid adieu to all comforts on leaving 
Augusta, and make the necessary prepara- 
tions for a hard and rough campaign. If he 
has a wife and children unprovided for, and 
to whom he has not the means of leaving a 
suitable legacy, let him by all means be careful 
to insure his life to the highest amount the 
offices will take ; for the chances of perishing 


on the road are at the rate of ten to one, 
calculated according to the following table of 
casualties : 

1. By horses running away. 

2. By drowning. 

3. By murder. 

4. By explosion. 

When told in Augusta of the numberless 
accidents which awaited me on this tour, 
I could not refrain from laughing, satisfied in 
my own mind that they were exaggerated, 
and that I could not possibly have to endure 
more than I had already encountejed during 
my journey from Norfolk to Charleston ; but 
experience soon taught me to view the latter 
trip in the light of pleasant and comfortable, 
when compared with the inconveniences, not 
to say sufferings, to which a traveller is ex- 
posed, when hazarding his person in the woods 
of Georgia and Alabama. I had hitherto 
ventured to indulge in invective against the 
roads in Virginia and both Carolinas : these 
were now English turnpike-roads, when com- 
pared with those I had actually to traverse. 
I had also complained of the indifference of 
the staples in the same State : in Alabama 
I should have deemed myself happy, could 
I but have got sight of a Virginia stage, 


instead of the skeleton vehicles which were pre- 
sented to my view. Too often had I heaped 
animadversions on the Virginia drivers : in 
Alabama again, I should have conferred oa 
them the title of real gentlemen. I had even 
gone so far as to speak in derision and with 
contempt of the tough, split, and broiled 
fowls, with which a traveller is regaled at 
every meal in Virginia, and which are alive 
five minutes before they are put on the table 
for consumption : in Alabama, where bacon 
and sweet potatoes constitute the only de- 
licacies, one of the feathered tribe would 
have been considered superior to the best 
Parisian patee aux triiffes. 

It was towards dusk that I took my place 
in a narrow, old-fashioned stage, in company 
with eight passengers, who were proceeding 
to Macon, a distance of about one hundred 
and twenty-five miles. Scarcely had we lost 
sight of Augusta, when a dark, heavy cloud, 
greeted us with a drenching shower. All the 
luggage had, in consequence of the great 
quantity of mail-bags, been thrown carelessly 
on the top of the stage : let the reader judge 
of its condition at sunrise on the following 
morning, when our coach fairly stuck fast in 
a mud-hole, out of which the soaking wet 


and mud-covered passengers vainly endea- 
voured for several successive hours to extri- 
cate it. One of them, a foolish landlord, 
contributed materially to its extrication, and 
to keep up the spirits of his unfortunate tra- 
velling companions, by singing Irish melodies: 
but, desirous of accompanying his songs by 
an exhibition on the light fantastic toe, he 
suddenly slipped, and disappeared in the deep 
puddle, splashing the bystanders all over with 
dirty water. Owing to the coolness of the 
driver, he, however, escaped a watery grave; 
but, wet as he was, he resumed his seat in- 
side the coach. Having at length obtained 
assistance from some waggoners, who with 
difficulty contrived to lift the stage out of the 
hole, we continued our journey uninterrupt- 
edly till evening, when new adventures 
awaited us. The road, entirely of clay, sadly 
cut up by the continual transport of cotton, 
and full of deep holes and furrows, had, be- 
sides, numberless roots, stumps, and trunks, 
of trees, left absolutely untouched by the 
makers of this highway. Between these, 
amidst crooked and steep hills, the coachman 
was obliged to proceed very cautiously; and 
he was frequently under the necessity of 
making several turns about the same hill, to 


avoid coming' in contact with these dangerous 
obstructions, which must infallibly upset the 
coach. It was on a hill of this kind, where 
he had probably neglected the usual precau- 
tion, that one of the carriage-wheels was un- 
luckily raised by two stumps, high enough 
to touch the axletree ; and, by the violent 
concussion, the pole, as well as the wheel, 
was shivered to pieces, and a large hole broken 
in the bottom of the carriage itself. To me 
it is still a matter of surprise that none of 
the passengers were hurt, though 1 must con- 
fess that the confusion was sufficiently great 
to have produced the most disastrous conse- 
quences. To find assistance in the midst of 
a wild forest, and this too at midnight, was 
not to be expected. A deliberative council 
was held, at which it was resolved that we 
should continue our journey partly on foot, 
partly on horseback, leaving' the coachman to 
take care of the baggage till the following- 
morning. At daylight we arrived at the 
much wished-for Macon. 

Were I to judge of the little I saw of 
Georgia, I should say, that the soil of this 
State did not appear much adapted to the 
cultivation of cotton ; however, from other 
accounts, it seems that the interior is as fertile 

VOL. I. E E 

418 MACON. 

as those regions through which I directed my 
course were poor. Far be it from me to 
question the correctness of this statement ; 
on the contrary, it is more than probable, 
considering the large quantities of cotton pro- 
duced in this State, which are afterwards 
forwarded for sale to Macon, Augusta, and 
Savannah. Between Augusta and Macon, 
nevertheless, the soil is extremely poor, con- 
sisting chiefly of sand. 1 have seldom beheld 
a wilder picture. No mountains are found ; 
but steep hillocks and heaps of stone in abun- 
dance. Between these, in the loose sand, are 
pines growing close to each other, and a hun- 
dred different species of oak. Cultivated fields 
were hardly ever discernible, and the few 
scattered ones that we did see bore the ap- 
pearance of indifferent soil. The houses, which 
from the road seemed to be at an immense dis- 
tance from each other, hardly deserved the 
name of human habitations : had they been 
without chimneys, I should have been inclined 
to consider them as sheds for the reception of 
hogs. Even the inhabitants of these regions 
had something savage about them : their dress, 
manners, language, all seemed to partake of 
the repulsive features of wild nature. 

Before arriving at Macon, we passed 


through the small towns of Warrenton, 
Povvelton, and Sparta, as well as MUledge- 
ville, the capital of Georgia, situated on a 
sand-hill, near the River Oconee, and in 
its present dilapidated state a woful monu- 
ment of more prosperous days. The town 
was at this time rather lively and noisy, owing 
to a land-lotteiy, organized by the State, 
then drawing. Georgia had, several years 
before, bought large tracts of land from the 
Indians within the territory of the State, 
which it was now, according to contract, 
obliged to relinquish. The lots were divided 
by the State among its citizens in such a man- 
ner, that each inhabitant who had resided in 
Georgia three years after the passing of the 
act by the Legislature was entitled to a 
ticket ; a married man received an additional 
ticket, and, if he happened to have children, 
he obtained a third ticket. Whoever had 
upon any occasion fought for his country 
was also presented with a particular ticket. 
Even gold regions were shared in like manner, 
and with the same distinctions among the 
inhabitants : the latter division caused, how- 
ever, considerable dissatisfaction, it being 
openly declared that fraud and deception had 
been practised by an individual who had the 

E E 2 


management of it. This person was arraigned 
before the tribunal upon various charges con- 
nected with it, but the Court had come to no 
decision when 1 left Georgia. 

Macon was founded in the year 1823, on a 
sand-bank near the River Ocmulgee, and 
counts about three thousand inhabitants. Its 
excellent locality for purchases of cotton has 
already had great influence on its increase; 
so many as eighty thousand bales of this article 
are annually sent from this place to Savannah, 
which traffic brings considerable capital into 
circulation. The environs of Macon retain 
their pristine features: tall firs rise in every 
direction, like dismal and impenetrable walls. 
Here and there may be seen a small piece 
of land lately cleared ; the trees had been so 
recently felled or burnt that a perpendicular 
column of smoke rose from the stumps wliich 
remained almost to the sky. Amidst these 
stumps, as if peeping out of the dark wood, 
were observed a few solitary frame-houses, 
where some of the townspeople spend their 
winters and summers. In the town, the build- 
ings, erected at some distance from each 
other, are also of wood, some two stories, but 
most of them only one story high, divided 
into two apartments, of which that fronting 


the street is used as a store, the other reserved 
for the family, let it be ever so numerous. In 
most places recently peopled, the practice of 
crowding tog-ether many persons in the same 
room is of common occurrence : in houses in 
the country, particularly in those in the woods, 
the accommodation of a separate apartment 
is out of the question ; but, in a town with 
three thousand inhabitants, to find wealthy 
families living together in one confined room 
was certainly more than I anticipated. I 
formed an acquaintance with several of them 
in very comfortable circumstances, who would 
in any part of the world have been considered 
affluent, and yet they lived in a single apart- 
ment, beyond the store. The furniture was 
in harmony with the rest, simple, coarse, and 
tasteless : the manner of living, too, was sim- 
plicity itself. The people are mostly Presby- 
terians, a sect which forbids every thing 
bordering on ostentation, and whose princi- 
ples are not a little conducive to the preva- 
lence of artless and unsophisticated manners: 
in Macon these seemed to be strictly followed. 
The streets are not paved, but covered with 
light sand, which the least wind raises in 
volumes, so as to conceal one side of the 
street from the inhabitants of the other. Like 


all those in the new Southern States, they 
form right angles and parallel lines, and ar^ 
of a width not to be found in older cities. 
Many of these streets had not yet been 
named, and were only marked out by the 
clearing of the wood, and the digging of 
ditches on the sides : on the map of the town 
a place had already been assigned to them, as 
well as to many others, on which were still 
left the stumps of the trees, which are not a 
little dangerous to the passenger in the dark. 
With streets in such a condition, it was not sur- 
prising that coaches were very seldom seen : 
I observed no vehicles in Macon, but a few 
miserable stages and a couple of country 
waggons. Most people travelled on horse- 
back ; and this rule was observed upon every 
occasion, whether they were going into the 
country, or merely to visit a neighbouring- 
friend. The aversion to walking must be 
either the natural consequence of the heat of 
the climate, which produces a relaxation of 
the system, or the effect of indolence, that has 
insensibly grown into a habit. I shall not 
stop to decide the question, but only to men- 
tion its existence. Saddle-horses were seen 
whole days standing before the houses, and, 
when not there, were to be found in sheds in 


the yards. A merchant could not conclude a 
bargain with a neighbour, if ever so near, 
without his horse. A sueing swain would be 
sure of a rebuff, if he had the temerity to 
present himself as a pedestrian at the resi- 
dence of his mistress. 

The principal article of commerce in Macon 
is, as I have before observed, cotton. The 
bales are forwarded, immediately after pur- 
chase, to the two neighbouring seaports, of 
which Savannah, on account of its proximity, 
receives the largest supply. The conveyance 
is effected by means of the rivers, first by the 
Ocmulgee, on which Macon is situated, after- 
wards by the Oconee, which joins the Ocmul- 
gee, and forms the large river Alatamaha, 
down which it is carried as far as Darien. 
The craft are either long and narrow, or built 
in the shape of boxes, the bottom of which is 
made of timber and cork. On these small 
vessels eight rows of bales are piled up ; from 
four to five hundred constituting a cargo. 
They float down the stream, and look like 
moving houses. This method of conveying 
goods was, however, by some individuals, 
considered both expensive and tedious : a few 
of the wealthier and more enterprizing citi- 
zens determined to make a trial with steam- 


boats. One was built, by way of experiment, 
with a flat bottom, to enable her to get over 
the shoals in the river, at low and high water. 
This steamer was not finished when 1 left 

The climate, in these desolate regions, com- 
pensates, in some measure, for the pleasures 
elsewhere so highly valued ; which a want of 
civilization among different classes here pre- 
cludes. The atmosphere is, during the whole 
winter, extremely mild and agreeable : in 
summer the heat is great, without being op- 
pressive, or attended with epidemics, so pre- 
valent near the coast. In the middle of 
December, the period when I visited Macon, 
the leaves first began to change colour, a 
change w^hich I had already witnessed the 
preceding September in the States of New 
York and Pennsylvania. Thousands of roses 
were still in full bloom on terraces before the 
houses, and here and there I saw flowers in 
the fields, of which I had been in the habit of 
taking leave on the appearance of the first 
autumn day; but in this delightful climate 
they continue to dispense their fragrance till 
the arrival of the new year. The surrounding 
woods were filled with the most odoriferous 
and enlivening perfumes, and even in certain 


parts of the town, at sunset, the evening breeze 
wafted to the pedestrian a delicious odour. 

On my return from an excursion to the 
ruins of a fort, formerly raised against the 
Indians, a free Negro was shown to me, who, 
unlike all others of the same race, had not 
had recourse to beggary after recovering his 
liberty. It is an incontestable fact, fully 
authenticated by experience, that a Negro, 
once a slave, and afterwards set free, from 
that moment becomes as useless as he has 
formerly been industrious. I was therefore 
not a little pleased to form acquaintance with 
a man so different from the rest, which leaves 
at least one conclusive evidence on record, 
that the doctrine so repeatedly advanced, and 
so revolting to the ideas of the philanthropists, 
is false, namely, that a Negro is half man and 
half brute. His name was Solomon Hum- 
phries, and he was as well known by all classes 
a hundred miles round as the governor him- 
self. He kept a kind of grocery store, which 
yielded a handsome annual profit, and added 
to an already acquired property of twenty 
thousand dollars. Known as industrious and 
prudent, he had greater credit than many an 
extensive merchant : and there was no indi- 
vidual in Macon, from the richest cotton-dealer 


to the poorest servant, who did not stop and 
shake him by the hand. Solomon was married 
to a woman of colour, drove his own unosten- 
tatious carriag-e, and had a neat and comfort- 
abiy furnished house, where he often enter- 
tained strangers. The principal merchants 
were not above accepting his invitations to 
dinner : upon these occasions, they were wel- 
comed with an hospitality and kindness 
perhaps unexpected from a Negro. Never 
forgetting his station in life, it was customary 
with him, when performing the office of host, 
to wait upon his guests in person ; and, 
although possessing several slaves, he never 
permitted any of them to stand behind the 
chairs, or even to approach the table. He made 
a rule of inviting every stranger coming to 
the city, and as such 1 had also the honour of 
an invitation ; I was, however, under the ne- 
cessity of declining it, having already fixed 
the period of my departure for Columbus on 
the following evening. It was with no small 
mortification that I renounced this pleasure ; 
probably it was the last time in my life that 
I should have an opportunity of dining with a 
Negro, as it was the only invitation I ever 

A little before midnight I was again in the 


stage, filled, as usual, with nine travellers, 
mostly inhabitants of Columbus, returnini^ 
from Milledgeville, where they had been 
drawing tickets for lots in the gold region. 
The conversation turned exclusively on the 
subject of gold dust and gold bars : calcula- 
tions of certain incomes, derivable from this 
source of wealth, were made in the coach, and 
appeared, at least to them, so clear and in- 
falHble, that it would have been easier to con- 
vince them that the earth is square, than that 
they could possibly fail to be possessed, in the 
course of a few years, of as much of the pre- 
cious metal as would purchase a kingdom in 
Europe. I listened for a long time with the 
greatest attention to these lofty statements 
and illustrative plans, and was just on the 
eve of joining' the general conversation, with 
a view to obtain some further information 
respecting these valuable gold regions, when 
a very sudden and serious shock at one 
end of the coach demolished at once all 
aerial castles and golden dreams, and di- 
rected the attention of every one to his per- 
sonal safety, preparatory to his becoming a 
Croesus. The driver, who had probably also 
been indulging in the same happy dreams, 
having himself drawn a prize in the golden 


lottery, had unfortunately missed his way in 
the dark, and did not discover his error till 
the carriage was fairly jammed between two 
old trees, which squeezed the frail vehicle so 
dreadfully that the axletree was broken in 
pieces. This accident happened in the middle 
of a steep hill, dow^n which the coach rolled 
with no ordinary velocity, so that the horses, 
once started, could not be stopped, but ran 
away the moment the accident occurred. 
Left alone with the fragments of a ci-devant 
stage, we held a consultation as to the best 
mode of proceeding* : at the recommendation 
of the driver, it was unanimously resolved to 
await the approach of morning, and take the 
chance of meeting some waggon, roomy enough 
to convey ourselves and our luggage to the 
nearest village, distant about sixteen miles. 
Without waiting for the break of day, 1 con- 
tinued my journey on foot, in company with 
one of the passengers well acquainted with 
the road. During this compulsory prome- 
nade, I had frequent opportunities of contem- 
plating the wild and uniform appearance of 
these uncultivated regions. From a soil 
almost exclusively of sand, rose a close and 
dark wood, the height of whose trees bespoke 
venerable age. Here and there the loose and 


dry sand varied a little ; a verdant swamp 
was seen enveloped in fog, through which 
drooping- cypresses rose like ghosts at a 
gloomy distance. Nearer to Columbus, the 
country became more hilly : the Alleghany 
Mountain chain, which may be called the 
back-bone of North America, here commences 
in a long series of sloping hills, above and 
round which the road winds in various direc- 

It was at the foot of one of these hills that 
I fell in with a gang (as they are called) of 
slaves, on their march to New Orleans, for 
sale. The slave-trader had chained them 
two and two together, and so disposed of them 
during the few hours in the night allowed 
for rest after the day's fatigue, that none of 
them could possibly escape the watchful eyes 
of the owner or his assistant. A great num- 
ber of these miserable beings were seated 
round a large fire, attentively listening to 
each other's narratives : others were lying in 
groups, absorbed in profound sleep. At the 
further extremity, near a tree, was the slave- 
trader himself, looking sternly at his victims, 
and now and then roaring to them to be quiet. 
He was not, however, able to quell the general 
mirth that prevailed, occasioned by the Hvely 


anecdotes related by a young slave, about 
twenty, to his compan ions in misfortune : laugh- 
ter and signs of approbation continued with- 
out interruption. Yes, bursts of laughter 
made the whole wood ring. Who would have 
supposed that these were slaves, going to a 
market for sale? Without being perceived, 
we approached this singular group. They 
were all without any head-covering, but 
pretty decently dressed in linen clothes, in my 
opinion rather too light for winter, but with 
which they seemed perfectly satisfied. Real 
joy was expressed in every countenance, and 
they gave way to fits of laughter, which made 
their eyes sparkle with tears. 

The young speaker related with southern 
warmth the many vicissitudes he had ex- 
perienced during his short life, and painted in 
equally lively colours the happy and unhappy 
adventures in which he had been engaged. 
His narrative of an attempt to escape from his 
owner in South Carolina inspired me with 
real interest for the young hero : upon several 
occasions he made the most striking compa- 
risons. It was impossible not to feel com- 
passion, on hearing him describe the severe 
punishment which followed the unfortunate 
attempt: even the other slaves, so disposed 


to be merry, became silent for a moment, 
horror-struck at the faithful description which 
he gave of his corporeal suffering's. But this 
silence continued only for a few minutes : the 
narrative again became animated, and the 
audience was not backward in testifying its 
approbation by loud and reiterated applause. 
This short biography was scarcely finished, 
before a glittering object suddenly made its 
appearance from the small wood in the swamp, 
and changed the features of every face, sub- 
stituting astonishment and curiosity for joy 
and happiness ! The kindled fire spread its 
pale light over the bushes in the neighbour- 
hood, and between the bald fir-trunks stood 
a tall, swarthy, and wild-looking figure — it 
was an Indian of the Creek race, the first of 
the '*Red Men" I had seen in the woods. 
The strong impression which this meeting 
produced will not be easily effaced. I had 
in my subsequent travels frequent opportu- 
nities of seeing these sons of the forest, but 
never did they appear to me so formidable, 
so noble, so majestic, as this solitary Indian. 
His head was covered with a kind of red 
woollen turban, the ends of which hung down 
on one of his shoulders : on his legs he wore 
a kind of stockings, made of skins, and his 


feet were covered by a pair of handsome 
moccasins. He was wrapped in a blanket, 
which, nevertheless, did not prevent my see- 
ing his strong, well-proportioned, and ath- 
letic figure. His height and martial air 
(such as a warrior ought to have) — the ex- 
pression of his countenance — his features — 
were all noble and grand. Could this really 
be a savage ? 

My travelling companion, who had often 
seen Indians, was not seized with the same 
degree of admiration as myself, and lost no 
time in asking him the motive of his sudden 
appearance. The reply destroyed the illusion 
as quickly as his person had at first pre- 
possessed me. Whisky was now the only 
deity he worshipped : for the possession of it 
he would sell father, children, and country. 
How much more delighted should I have been, 
had I seen him raise his tomahawk, and, 
foaming with rage, demand the blood of the 
Whites, instead of begging for a compound 
which, like slow poison, undermined his con- 
stitution, enervated the sinewy arm, and made 
the free hero an object of contempt, com- 
miserated by none. Hardly had he received 
the wished-for liquor, before he eagerly put the 
bottle to his mouth, and ran away from us. 


carrying* off the few remaining drops. Un- 
happy man! His draught was death. In 
the course of the following day his corpse 
was found close to a fire in the middle of the 
wood. Judging from the situation in which 
his half-consumed body was discovered, he 
must have fallen asleep in an intoxicated state 
too near the fire, and been either suffocated 
or burnt to death. 




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